The nutty buckwheat groat called kasha is an Old World grain known well in Eastern Europe. In supermarkets, it’s shelved in the kosher or international section. Like other bland but nutritious grains, kasha needs a lift. The grains are already roasted, but this method of toasting the kasha over medium heat after mixing it with egg is important to keeping the taste nutty and the grains separate.
1 cup whole or coarse-ground kasha
1 egg, lightly beaten
3 tablespoons butter
1 large red onion, chopped
1 pound assorted mushrooms (crimini, shiitake, portobello), coarsely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 cups beef or chicken stock
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
1. In a bowl, stir the kasha with the egg until evenly combined. In a large skillet over medium heat, tip in the kasha mixture. Cook, stirring constantly with a fork, for 3 minutes or until the kasha is dry and all the grains are separate. Transfer the kasha to a bowl and wipe out the pan.
2. Add the butter to the skillet. When it melts, add the onion, mushrooms, garlic, salt, and pepper. Cook, stirring often, for 10 minutes or until the mushrooms release their liquid.
3. Add the kasha, stock, and thyme. Bring the mixture to a boil, lower the heat, and cover the pan. Simmer for 15 minutes.
4. Stir the kasha and let it stand, covered, for 10 minutes before serving. Fluff with a fork. Rachel Travers. Adapted from “The Uncommon Gourmet’s All-Occasion Cookbook”