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The Serendipitous Chef calls it "Popcorn of the Gods". Experiment with popped amaranth, like tiny popcorn. It's much lighter than oats for an energy bar. Here, the amaranth is bound together with honey and dried fruits. Discovered at the Santa Fe Farmer's Market, Keegan Crumpacker Catering, New Mexico.
Dried energy bars provoke Vata unless each bite is chased with a sip of water. Dense dried fruits must be chewed well for delicate Vata digestions. Otherwise, a healthy, compact, light snack.
History of Amaranth from Wikipedia:
Amaranth grain was one of the staple foodstuffs of the Incas, and it is known as kiwicha in the Andes today. It was also used by the ancient Aztecs, who called it huautli, and other Native America peoples in Mexico to prepare ritual drinks and foods. To this day, amaranth grains are toasted much like popcorn and mixed with honey or molasses to make a treat called alegrķa (literally "joy" in Spanish).
Amaranth was used in several Aztec ceremonies, where images of their gods (notably Huitzilopochtli) were made with amaranth mixed with honey. The images were cut to be eaten by the people. This looked like the Christian communion to the Roman Catholic priests, so the cultivation of the grain was forbidden for centuries.
Pop the amaranth according to the directions below. Mix all the ingredients together and shape into a bar. A delicious and light snack.
To pop the amaranth use a very hot frying pan without oil. Heat the pan on high for 2 or 3 minutes then test a few grains of amaranth. If they pop immediately, the pan is hot enough. Put in enough amaranth to just cover the bottom of the pan. Then put on a lid and shake the pan. This prevents burning the amaranth. When you hear the popping is slowing down (as in popcorn), pour it into a dish and repeat until you have enough popped amaranth.1/4c Amaranth yield 1 cup popped amaranth.
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Delicious although I used dried cranberries and sultanas (a type of white, seedless grape of Turkish, Greek, South African or Iranian origin). The family adores these scumptious treats
- Adrienne, Ciutadella de menorca, 04-17-10
I don't know if it's a high altitude thing. I live in Santa Fe, NM, which is 7,000 feet above sea level. I have struggled to pop amaranth and other grains. What do you suggest? I love puffed amaranth. I used to make energy bars with it...when a local restaurant sold me the amarant, I would use brown rice syrup and spirulina flour. Thanks for your time.
- Dorothy Martinez, Santa fe, 05-01-12
I thought fruit should be eaten with nothing but fruit. Is dried fruit different?
- Pat, 12-10-12
Dried fruit combines better with grains than fresh fruit. They are denser, and thus digest at relatively the same pace as the grain. Thanks for asking!