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Ancient grains revealed in RCC class

Q. What is an ancient grain and why would a cooking class be offered on the subject?

A. Ancient grains (some are seeds, some are grasses) are whole grains that are unchanged since horticultural practices have produced so many modern varieties.

A New York newspaper referred to ancient grains in 1996 as health foods, and thus brought them a new popularity. But how do you use them? A cooking class attempted to answer this practical part of the question posed above.

Recently at Rappahannock Community College, Glenns, through its Educational Foundation, Chef Ismael V. Castro taught a class “Taking the Mystery Out of Ancient Grains.”

“My goal is to teach how to cook grain so it is palatable. Most important is ratio of grain to liquid. It doesn’t always have to be water; there are wines, broths, plus other liquids of choice. Remember, you are developing the grain. Better to have a little more liquid than not enough. Add a small amount of oil if you like and a littl...

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