Tuesday, May 12, 2009

New For Lunch: MexiMillet

A while back I mentioned in a post that I had made an unsuccesful attempt to make millet cakes . It ended up in an emergency phone call to the Chinese delivery place. Although the cakes failed, I still had a lot of millet left over.

Millet is one of those exalted substances known as "whole grains". It's good for you, fairly easy to cook, and it's said to be extremely digestible. Digestibility is a big thing with me because the saintly quinoa gives me bad reflux issues.

The problem with millet? It's birdseed. Come on. Look at it. It's totally birdseed. This is the stuff they use as filler in those bags of seed you put in your bird feeder. You probably feed it to your canary too.

Anyway, I had it, and I needed some creative inspiration for a nice nutritious lunch. I get tired of sandwiches. I get tired of ordinary salads. I needed something new. I decided to see what I could do with the millet.

Oh look. More colorful heirloom tomatoes. I'm so obsessed with multicolored tomatoes, aren't I?

I sauteed some green pepper and onion just enough to soften them a bit, but not till they were mushy. I added the tomatoes, all diced up along with a can of black beans.

Everything got mixed in with the cooked millet. Then I tossed it with lots of cilantro and a dressing made of lime juice, honey, and cumin.

Some chunks of queso fresco made it a meal. Nice Mexican flavors and very satisfying. Sort of pretty too.

You can add or subtract all sorts of things to this. Some chorizo would be nice. Some avocado would be awesome. Swap out avocado for the cheese and this dish is vegan.

Mexican Style Millet Salad


  • 1 cup millet
  • 3.5 cups water
  • 1 medium red onion, diced
  • 1 large green pepper diced
  • 4 Tbl olive oil, divided
  • 4-5 ripe tomatoes, diced
  • 1 can black beans rinsed and drained
  • Queso fresco or other cheese of your choice, cubed (as much as you would like)
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • 1 Tbl honey
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Copious amounts of chopped fresh cilantro
Bring water to a boil and add millet. Cover and simmer 20 minutes until water is absorbed. Let stand 10 minutes more and fluff with a fork.

Saute onion and pepper in 2 Tbl oil. Don't let it get too soft. Add tomatoes and black beans. Allow tomatoes to soften slightly as well, but again, you want everything intact.

Mix together lime juice, cumin, honey and cilantro. Adjust seasoning.

Mix together the millet and the vegetables. Toss with lime juice mixture. Garnish with the cheese.


The Duo Dishes said...

Emergency call for take-out. Funny! Love the big hunks of queso fresco in there. That's a cheese we've yet to taste.

Emily said...

Yum! Sounds delicious. I've never had millet before.
Those tomatoes are gorgeous.

The Blonde Duck said...

LOL! I love how you literally "ate like a bird."

The Short (dis)Order Cook said...

DD - It's a pretty good cheese, a little like mozzarella.

Blondie - HAH! Yes I ate like a bird!

Em - Give millet a try. It's a very adaptable grain.

Jeff said...

Sweet! I have a ton of millet floating around the house from bird seed. Funny you mention chinese delivery because that or pizza are my goto recovery meals. Sadly they are starting to know me by name.

Nicely done and since I mostly have been using quinoa I bet you I could use those flavors with that too.