How to cook millets (Samai, varagu, kuthiravaali,Thinai)
Cooking millets are slightly different than making rice in few subtle ways. Millets can be a good substitute for traditional rice and comes with loads of benefits over rice. Cooking style needs to be tweaked for few millet varieties to attain desired fluffiness and texture. If not cooked properly it may turn too sticky, soggy or dry.
What You Need
• 1 cup of any one millet type : Barnyard Millet, Finger Millet, Foxtail Millet, Kodo Millet, Little Millet, Pearl Millet, Proso Millet, Sorghum
• 3 cups of water - 2 1/2 cup for preparing variety rice
• ¼ teaspoon salt (optional)
• 1 tablespoon unsalted butter (optional)
Instruction to cook Millets
Measure millets and water: Add 1 cup of millet to 3 cups of water, for making variety rice use 2 1/2 cup water.
Soaking in water: Foxtail millet needs to be soaked for one hour, all other millets does not need soaking.
Cleaning Millets: Clean millets like you do for rice. There are chances of stones or fine sand particles in millets, so remove them manually if any are present. If you feel difficult to clean you can use sieve or strainer to wash the millet.
After washing add 3 cups of water and switch on the heat.
Cookings : Method -1 (preferred)
When water starts boiling, reduce the heat to low, close it with a lid and cook for 10 minutes. Adding salt is optional. Some use this technique even for cooking rice.
After 10 minutes, switch off the flame and let it sit for 20 minutes. You can add butter now (optional). Millets gets cooked during resting time.
Once it cools it becomes fluffy and ready to serve. Serve millets while they are warm, they taste good.
Cookings : Method -2 (Pressure Cooking)
You can pressure cook millets in the same way as you pressure cook rice. Adjust number of whistle and water measurement depending on the cooker type you use. It may take few iteration to get the right combination.
Additional Notes :
Each millet is different, some are chewy, others soft grains and few may be crunchy grains. So one instruction does not fit cooking of all grains. Experiment and find which method suits your taste buds best.
Benefits of Millets are discussed in great detail and numerous articles are available in internet. do not miss making and tasting this grains.