Millet is not very commonly used in American kitchens but if you cook it once you will discover the many potential ways millet could be a part of everyday meals.
The most commonly used millet for cooking in United States is the pearl millet. It is different from the millet used for the bird feed known as Proso millet. The millet variety for dietary consumption in Asia and Africa is different from the golden pearl millet that is available here.
Millet has been a staple food in many african and asian countries and has been grown there for thousands of years. It is starting to gain some popularity in the west as a nutritious grain that is easy to grow. It tolerates drought well and adapts easily to various soil types.
Millet is a highly nutritious grain dense in minerals and vitamins and is essentially gluten free.
Millet is cooked by boiling till it softens but not so much that it is mashed. Use it as an alternative to couscous or rice. It tastes well in soups, salads and even by itself.
Boil it with lentil, other mixed vegetables and herbs to prepare a delicious soup. Cooked millet can be added to any mixed vegetable or bean salads. Add some sautéed onions to the boiled millet (salt added during boiling), garnish with herbs and it will be a quick and easy whole grain side dish.
Millet flour can be used to make multi-grain breads and also to thicken soups. Since millet is gluten free the multi-grain bread with millet flour will be dense. Millet flour can also be used to make small tortilla like breads cooked on skillet. These breads are dense, soft and break if folded (can not be folded like tortilla). These can be enjoyed with any mixed vegetable dish or soups.
Millet flour is available in some grocery stores and online. In El Paso, Sprouts sometimes carries the millet flour. You can also find it at the Toucan market in Las Cruces. Pearl millet is available at Sprouts in El Paso, Toucan market and the mountain view market in Las Cruces.
To expand the variety of whole grains in meals millet can be an excellent addition to different dishes.