We all eat grains. Most of us probably even on a daily basis. But how much do you actually know about the different types of grains? Let’s take a closer look at some of them. This time: rye!
Rye has not always had a lot of fans. Pliny the Elder once wrote that rye “is a very poor food and only serves to avert starvation”. I don’t agree with him. And neither does current research. Because rye turns out to be a very healthy food, and quite tasty too!
The grain crop rye is closely related to wheat and barley, but the grains have a lower gluten content. As it can grow under poor soil conditions, it is usually more popular in regions with difficult climates. Originally, winter rye was sown in autumn to keep the ground covered during winter. The grain would then grow during any warmer winter day, and give a nice bonus harvest in spring.
Due to its nutritional benefits, rye is a good addition to your diet. The flakes or meal contain lots of fiber, keeping you satisfied for longer and activating your digestive system. Apart from that, products with rye are amazing sources of magnesium, antioxidants, lignans and some vitamins.
Food with Rye
So how to get rye in your meals? It’s really easy, actually. Especially in North- and Eastern Europe, you will be able to find it in tons of bakery product. Rye bread is the most obvious, of course, and a perfect snack or lunch. Top it with some salted butter and old cheese, yumm! Another source of rye are knäckebröd and flatbread. These Scandinavian delicacies are healthy, delicious and the perfect easy snack. Top them with whatever you like, from smoked salmon to cottage cheese to honey to just butter, the possibilities are endless!
If you are not able to find these products at your store, or want to do more with rye, try to get your hands on some rye flakes (rolled rye) and rye meal. The flakes are perfect in your morning porridge. Since a few months, I have been adding two tablespoons of rye flakes to my oatmeal every morning. And it keeps me satisfied for so much longer. Now I can easily make it to my next eating moment, a big improvement!
The rye meal is very good to use in baking. It looks a bit greyish, but let that not put you off! When using only rye, your bakings will stay quite dense. For a lot of purposes, that is just ok. If you do want something more puffy, mix the rye with some other type of flour. That should help make it rise more.
All in all, I think rye is an amazing grain. So go ahead and give it a try. I’d love to hear your opinion about it!