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Millet And Black Bean Salad

 
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I’ve always had this romantic idea that I’d move to the town my grandmother was born, my ancestral home, and start a farm. I imagine a quiet modest farm surrounded by pristine wilderness.
While this dream is inhibited by the fact that I don’t have the wildest clue about farming, every time I read about someone or some couple who’ve gone off to start a farm, my heart quickens.
I thought about it seriously, albeit briefly once when a friend took a year off to work on a millet farm somewhere in the Sahel.
Millet is a grain (well, actually a seed) that has been around for thousands of years, it’s an important food source for people in Sahel region mainly because it’s such a low-maintenance crop – it grows in spite of the desert, droughts, high temperatures and low soil fertility.
It’s one tough plant, I hope there are songs and adages extolling its resilience…

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Millet is also nutrient rich, gluten free, easily digestible and absolutely delicious when done right. It has a hint of sweetness and a slight nutty flavour. The texture is gritty polenta-like.
I bought a bag of millet to try, just around the time I was idealizing my plan for the millet farm – I cooked it like I would rice, but I must have done something wrong because it was undercooked and tasted like tiny stones.
I’m a giver of second chances… so I tried it again, this time using a good recipe and following instructions, and voila! I’d added another grain in to my repertoire.

This millet and black bean salad is what I like to do to left over millet, I chop up a few vegetables and toss it together with the millet, and whatever beans I have in the fridge at the moment. I coat it in a simple dressing of balsamic vinaigrette and add some nuts – that’s dinner, sometimes with a side of other leftovers.
I usually make a batch to last me the week.

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