What Is Kamut?

Apr 15, 2013 2:31 pm

Protein-rich Khorasan wheat is one trendy grain

what is kamut?
Photo: Satoru Kikuchi on Flickr
Kamut is a type of ancient wheat that's more nutritious than conventionally grown grains.
 

Now here's a grain we don't see often enough: kamut. It's also called Khorasan wheat or Pharaoh grain, owing to the fact that grains were discovered in ancient Egyptian tombs. It's healthier than conventional wheat, and has a crazy backstory to boot. 

Kamut grains made their way to the U.S. via airmail from a soldier, whose farmer father sprouted and grew them over the next few years. Sadly, the wheat-like kernels never caught on and ended up as cattle feed. Also sadly, conventional wheat edged kamut out of the game into near-extinction. Thankfully, once we all realized that unadulterated ancient grains like kamut, quinoa, teff, spelt and buckwheat were not only trendy and awesome but also delicious and far more nutritious, they came back with a vengeance. 

Kamut has about 30% more protein than wheat, and more fatty acids. As an added bonus, some people who are allergic to wheat can tolerate kamut, which is great because its chewy, toothsome texture and nutty, rich flavor makes a delicious spring and summer salad. Use it in tabbouleh instead of bulgur wheat or try baking with kamut flour. 

Can you hear it now? "Oh this little thing I threw together? Pharaoh grain salad, no biggie."

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