Whilst I grew up eating soba (buckwheat noodles) in Japan, and indulged in the occasional galette (crepe made from buckwheat flour) when living in Paris, it was only last year that I ate buckwheat in its original form for the first time. I was introduced to buckwheat by my lovely Russian room mate Oksana, who would have it every day without fail. She had boxes of the stuff with her – apparently it’s a staple food in Russia, as well as other parts of Eastern Europe. Kind of like what rice is to Filipinos, they can’t live without it!
I quickly fell in love with it too. You can have it as porridge for breakfast, make granola with it, serve it as a side dish, throw them in a salad… I could go on and on. Kasha, which I used for this salad, is the toasted version of buckwheat. It’s dark brown in colour and has a gorgeous nutty flavour. Despite its appearance and name, buckwheat is not actually a cereal or grain – they are the seeds of a plant related to rhubarb. Unlike rice, wheat and corn, it doesn’t rank high on the GI scale, which means it won’t cause a huge spike in your blood sugar levels. It’s also gluten free for those with sensitivities.
All you need to do to make this colourful salad is to prepare the buckwheat, chop up the fruit & veg and mix it all together! The dressing only takes seconds to make – just blend a few ingredients and voila. Enjoooy!
- 1 cup of buckwheat
- 1 avocado
- 1 ripe mango
- 10 cherry tomatoes
- ⅓ cup brazil nuts
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- sea salt
- Bring 2 cups of water to a boil with a pinch of salt. Add the buckwheat and simmer on low heat and covered for 10 minutes. Most of the water should be absorbed.
- Take of the heat and let it stand covered for another 5 minutes.
- Dice the avocado, half of the mango and brazil nuts into small, bite size pieces.
- Mix with the cooled buckwheat and serve with the dressing.
- To make the dressing: Simply add half a mango, the balsamic vinegar, oil and salt in a blender. You may need to add a little water for it to blend nicely.