Tips to bring spelled to the table, a versatile cereal, easy to cook, perfect paired with fish, meat and vegetables
Spelled it is a cereal with very ancient origins: the Romans made it the "puls", a kind of polenta that remained the most consumed food of the poor even in the imperial age. Since each ear generally bears only one kernels, it was gradually replaced by other cereals even if, with the return of interest in regional, poor and traditional foods, a new moment of glory is reliving!
Its name indicates three species of grasses of the same botanical genus of wheat: Triticum monococcum, Triticum turgidum and Triticum aestivum and unlike soft and hard wheat, the three species of spelled are dressed grains. For this reason the beans, after threshing, require mechanical procedures to be peeled. Sometimes they can also be pearly, such as barley and rice, and this makes them clearer but reduces the amount of fiber and nutrients.
Spelled has a very particular aroma, which adapts very well to decisive combinations. It can be combined with fish and vegetables, it can be an accompaniment for meat, which, with spelled as a garnish, creates many unique dishes. On the market it is pearly, semi-pearly, whole (with the outer film of the grain, called glumetta), broken, in flour and flakes for breakfast. Spelled is a highly appreciated food in the kitchen and considered among those beneficial to health. Especially the hulled one, it contains a lot of fiber, carbohydrates, proteins, valuable fats and vitamins, in particular from group B. It is also low in calories and, absorbing a lot of water, it immediately gives a sense of satiety. Folk medicine has always attributed to him energy, refreshing and intestinal regulation properties. Those pearly and semi-pearly with chemical treatments have lost part of their nutritional properties and are considered of lesser quality.
How to prepare it
First wash the spelled under running water to remove all impurities. If you use hulled spelled, remember to leave it to soak the night before, for pearly spelled it doesn't need to be soaked. Spelled is consumed boiled, in abundant salted water: the hulled one cooks in about an hour, the pearly or semi-pearly one in 30 minutes. Double the water must always be considered compared to the cereal. Once cooked, let it rest for ten minutes to absorb all the water before seasoning it. It can also be toasted as if it were rice or steamed.
Vegetables, fish or meat: the ideal pairings
Spelled is a very versatile food, it goes very well with vegetables, fish or meat to prepare appetizers, first or second courses. It can be used in timbales or instead of rice in supplì. It is excellent in a salad with cherry tomatoes, green beans and olives, accompanied by mozzarella, basil and tomato or with a pesto of zucchini and prawns. A fresh and summery recipe is spelled with aubergine cream, walnuts, pine nuts and mint. Combined with cooked vegetables it gives flavor to soups or gives a load of protein combined with sauteed legumes. Spelled can also be used to prepare sweets, with honey, ricotta and cinnamon. But remember to cook the spelled separately from the ingredients.
Bread, biscuits and cakes
Spelled flour is an excellent alternative to type 00 flour for preparing cakes, breads or biscuits. It is more digestible than 00 flour, it is less caloric and has a gluten more easily attacked by our digestive system. Furthermore, being spelled less refined than soft wheat, it maintains more nutrients.