Amaranth is grown for both its seeds and leaves. The fibre-rich grain is prepared in boiling water, like rice, or popped like corn. Its leaves are a staple food in Asia and Africa and are eaten in the same ways as other leafy green vegetables. The plant that the amaranth seed comes from can be grown at any elevation without needing a lot of water, making it an ideal crop in areas where water is scarce.
Believed to have been first cultivated in Mexico, amaranth is one of the oldest crops, beloved by the Aztecs and Incas for its suspected supernatural properties.
Relative to other grains, amaranth’s sandy yellow seed is high in magnesium and protein. It has a mild, slightly nutty taste and gelatinous texture making it ideal for soups, side dishes and risottos.