Amaranto | Amaranth
Scientific Name: Amaranthus spp.
Common Name: Amaranto, Amaranth, Kiwicha (Quechua), Chua (Bengali), Rajgira (Hindi), Huantli (Nahuatl), Khada sag (Nepali)
Culinary Use: Amaranto, or amaranth, is a versatile grain-like seed that is used in various culinary preparations. It can be cooked and used as a grain substitute in pilafs, porridges, and salads. Amaranto flour is also used in baking, especially for making gluten-free bread, cookies, and other baked goods. The leaves of certain amaranth species, known as callaloo or Chinese spinach, are edible and used as leafy greens in cooking.
Medicinal Use: Amaranto has been traditionally consumed for its potential health benefits. It is rich in protein, fiber, and various minerals, making it a nutritious addition to a balanced diet. Some studies suggest that amaranto may have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, as well as potential cholesterol-lowering effects.
Fun Fact: Amaranto has a long history of cultivation and consumption, dating back thousands of years. It was a staple food for ancient civilizations such as the Aztecs and Incas. The name "amaranth" comes from the Greek words "amarantos" and "anthos," meaning "unfading flower." This refers to the vibrant flowers of some amaranth species that retain their color even after drying.