Monday, November 14, 2011

Product Review-Grains

  If you have missed my reviews of the entrees or the drink line, be sure to check them out. Now I'd like to do a review of some of the THRIVE grains. Often times we find ourselves storing grains because it's the right thing to do, but we don't really know what benefits we're receiving by eating them, or sometimes even how to use them. Here is what I know, and what I have recently learned about some of the more unique grains Shelf Reliance offers.

.27/serving     Cooking Ratio 1:3     Cook time on stove 25 min.

-may be of benefit to those with hypertension and cardiovascular disease; regular consumption reduces blood pressure and cholesterol levels, while improving antioxidant status and some immune parameters.
-contains more protein, iron, fiber and magnesium than any other gluten-free grain (one cup raw Amaranth contains 28.1 grams protein)
-excellent source of lysine, an important amino acid
-good source of polyunsaturated fatty acid and contains vitamin E in similar amounts to olive oil
-is an exceptional thickener for roux, white sauces, soups and stews
  A great "popcorn" replacement snack: Place 1-2 tablespoons in a saute pan over medium heat, stirring constantly until it "pops".
  Try a "Google" search for amaranth recipes, you'll be amazed at what you find.


.20/serving     Cooking Ratio 1:3     Cook time on stove 35 min.

-the protein content is very close to that of wheat; both provide about 11% protein by weight
-rich in B vitamins, especially niacin, B6 and folic acid, calcium, iron, potassium, magnesium, and zinc
-are also a mild thyroid peroxidase inhibitor and probably should not be consumed in great quantities by those with thyroid disease
-in China millet soup is commonly used by nursing mothers to aid in milk production and healing from childbirth
-is great as a bird food

Millet Mashed Potatoes-Eden Foods (they have a slew of fantastic recipes available)


 Oat Groat
.21/serving     Cooking Ratio 1:3     Cook time on stove 90 min.

-groats are whole grains that include the cereal germ and fiber-rich bran portion of the grain as well as the endosperm (which is the usual product of milling)
-consuming groats has become increasingly popular among NFL players, often citing the sustained energy that groats provide. Typically, the groat(s) are digested the night before, usually doused with groat juice
-oats store longest in groat form; it helps the good properties stay intact
-may be made into cereal or ground and used as a flour


 Pearled Barley

-is de-hulled barley which has been steam-processed further to remove the bran
-contains eight essential amino acids
-may be processed into a variety of barley products, including flour, flakes similar to oatmeal, and grits
-is a great substitute for rice in a variety of recipes (check out Bon Appetit for a few)

Quinoa (pronounced "keen-wah")
.63/serving     Cooking Ratio 1:2     Cook time on stove 20 min.

-contains a balanced set of essential amino acids for humans, making it a complete protein source, unusual among plant foods
-good source of dietary fiber and phosphorus and is high in magnesium and iron
-naturally has a protective casing called "saponin" which has a bitter taste, and should be rinsed before consuming (THRIVE Quinoa is pre-rinsed)
-has a light, fluffy texture when cooked, and its mild, slightly nutty flavor makes it an alternative to white rice or couscous (there is a slew of recipes available on the internet for Quinoa Pilafs and Salads)
Rice Flour    

-THRIVE rice flour is made from raw white rice 
-is a good substitution for wheat flour, which can cause irritation to the digestive system (found in those who are gluten-intolerant)
-great thickening agent in recipes that are refrigerated or frozen, since it inhibits liquid separation

Monkey Cookies- Sariah Schmickrath (I've tried her cookies and they're delicious!)

.24/serving     Cooking Ratio 1:3     Cook time on stove 120 min.

I'm going to refer you to Sariah at because she has provided such a fantastic review of this product. 

Here is Sariah's recipe for Spelt Waffles
2 eggs, beaten
1 3/4 c. reconstituted THRIVE Powdered Milk
1/4 c. canola oil
1/4 c. unsweetened applesauce
1 tsp. vanilla
1 3/4 c. THRIVE Spelt flour
1/4 c. THRIVE White flour
2 1/2 tsp. THRIVE Baking Powder
2 Tbsp. THRIVE White Sugar
1/4 tsp. THRIVE Salt

  In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, applesauce and vanilla. Mix in flours, baking powder, sugar and salt (Do Not over-mix).
  Preheat a waffle iron and coat with cooking spray. Pour batter onto waffle iron in batches; cook until crisp and golden.

(source-Wikipedia,, and Sariah at

There you have it! Contact me if there are any other products you would like me to review.

                                                                                                     Autumn Christiansen
                                                                                                         Independent Consultant-Shelf Reliance
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