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The Forgotten, Multi-Beneficial Grain – Pearl Millet (Bajra)

Published on: 12 December , 2017 | Sonika Goyel

The Pearl Millet (Bajra) is almost negligent from our diet nowadays and the upcoming generation doesn’t even know the taste of it. However, it is widely used in states like Rajasthan and Gujarat because of its nutritional value. Hence, it makes a sense to start including Bajra in our diet again. Many Dieticians & Nutritionists are also suggesting and creating awareness about this millet due to its various health benefits. Nutritional Benefits:
  • It is a rich source of many essential vitamins like Vitamin E, Vitamin K, Thiamine, Riboflavin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Folate and Pantothenic acid.
  • It provides essential minerals like  calcium, copper, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, zinc and potassium.
  • It is a rich of fibre which helps in better digestion, weight loss (by providing slowly realising carbs) and control diabetes (by monitoring blood sugar levels).
  • It has high content of Iron and Proteins (rarely found in vegan diet).
  • The presence of phytic acid and niacin in bajra helps in lowering the cholesterol.
  • Regular intake of bajra protects pre-menopausal women from developing breast cancer.
  • It is Gluten Free and thus a good alternative for those suffering from celiac disease and cannot tolerate gluten. Hence, it is easily digestible and rarely causes allergic reactions.
  • It also has Omega 6 fatty acids that are beneficial for the human body.
  • It is also good for Lactating Mothers and those with PCOS.
  However, Bajra should be consumed in moderation during summer as it may cause little discomfort and digestive problems. In Summer, Bajra can be had best with buttermilk or make a Bajra Raabdi/Porridge using curd.   Bajra is best consumed during Winters and we have quite a few recipes to choose from, like:
  • Bajra Roti with Jaggery (recipe below)
  • Bajra Khichdi
  • Bajra Upma
  • Bajra Thalipeeth
  • Bajra Sweet Chakli
  • Bajra vermicelli
  • Bajra Porridge/ Raabdi (recipe below)
  • Bajra and Green Gram Tikki
  • Bajra and Moong Dal Dosa
  As a precautionary note, people with kidney and rheumatic diseases should use it with care since excessive eating of these grains causes high uric acid deposits in the system. Apart from this, Bajra can be categorised as a Power-packed grain due to its high nutrient content. This gives us a sufficient reason to include it in our regular Diet and give it the most needed attention.

Recipes:

Bajra Roti with Jaggery: It’s very easy to make Bajra Roti, just needs little practice and patience.
  1. Take the Bajra Flour, add little salt and knead a soft dough.
  2. Roll the Chapati with hands, avoid using Rolling Pin as it may stick to it and break it. The Chapati will be little thicker than regular roti.
  3. Then cook the Chapati on medium flame in a well heated pan.
  4. Add ghee and serve hot with Jaggery.
  Bajra Porridge/Raabdi:
  1. Wash and soak 1 cup of Bajra grains for 30 minutes.
  2. Coarsely grind them.
  3. Add 1 cup of Curd and salt to taste. Cook on low flame stirring continuously, as it may form lumps. It may take 10-15 mins for the Bajra to cook well.
  4. Let it cool and then keep in fridge.
  5. Serve Chilled.
 
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Sonika Goyel

A Chartered Accountant by profession and have worked as a finance professional in an IT Industry. A doting stay at home mom to a 2.5 year old son. Currently, pursuing my interest in writing and blogging. I love cooking, travelling and reading. When I am not doing any of these, I love to listen some good soothing music.


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