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A diminutive South American grain, amaranth has an earthy flavor and is naturally gluten-free. The seeds of the amaranth plant are rich in iron, a mineral that helps deliver oxygen to your baby for proper development. Amaranth can be cooked in liquid similar to other whole grains or—surprise!—popped like popcorn.
½ cup amaranth
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
¼ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup pecans, chopped
⅓ cup dried cherries or raisins
½ cup fresh blueberries
1 medium apple, chopped
2 cups milk
4 tablespoons pure maple syrup
2 tablespoons unsweetened coconut
1. Heat a medium-sized saucepan over medium-high heat. When a drop of water energetically sizzles in the pan, add 1 tablespoon amaranth, cover with a lid and shake the pan as soon as the grains begin to pop vigorously. Keep the pan on the burner until most of the amaranth has popped, about 10 to 15 seconds. (If amaranth burns, shake the pan about 1-inch above the burner when the popping begins.) Remove from the pan and place in a large bowl. Repeat with remaining grain.
2. In a small bowl, combine cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and salt. Divide popped amaranth among serving bowls and top with equal amounts of spice mixture, pecans, cherries, blueberries and apple. Pour in milk and top each bowl with maple syrup and coconut.
Per serving: 388 calories, 9.5 g protein, 61 g carbohydrate, 14 g fat (3 g saturated fat), 230 mg calcium, 2.9 mg iron, 33 mcg folate, 6 g fiber