Wheat-berries & Cream

Rev 1.01, last revised:  14-Sep-08

There's a lot to learn and know about carbohydrates, fats, and what we eat.  Much of what you thought you knew: IS WRONG!  This recipe came out of exactly such a revelation.  If you want to learn more about carbohydrates and fats in the diet, and how they effect you, go here.

It is inevitable that we're going to eat vegetables and fruits, as well as seeds and nuts (the source of all carbohydrates in your diet).  And, no matter how you process them, they are going to yield some number of carbohydrates into your diet.  If you're physically active, you can take in far more carbohydrates than those of us that are older or live a more sedentary life-style.  Carbohydrates are, after all, for motility (movement--muscle activity).  We have, in our busy lives, a specific schedule that we hold to that requires us to go out and get some exercise.  There's a specific trail we take.  And on that trail, there are specific places we stop to "catch our breath" and rest a bit.  As has become our daily habit, we eat a zero carb breakfast before we leave for the trek.

Then along came a wonderful afternoon wherein I spent it making some "Apple Crisp" with a visiting grandson.  A bit was left, and we ate it for breakfast a few days later before our hike, instead of our normally low-carb victuals.  And wouldn't you know it, we blew by our normal "rest places" as if we were on fire!  It took some doing and a careful analysis, but I figured out that it had to have been the carbs we ate just before we left.  Okay, there's a lesson there...  Carbs are for motility.  They are the MOST easily accessed and used form of energy.  The body can use fats for this, but the process is both harder and takes more energy (which is why you tend to get thinner if you work out enough).

So, it became clear that we had to increase our carb intake for energy on our walking days, but not so much that this was all we ate.  Also, the carbs should be such that they could provide a level of energy over time.  This search for a better source of "fuel-food" (well, better than a sugary Apple-crisp) led me to wheat berries as a means to that end.  By cooking them they become rich yet moderated and digestible source of carbohydrates.  They're a complex and relatively complete food element.  Besides energy, they provide fats, vitamins and minerals, and fiber to slow the absorption process.


** I use hard, red, winter-wheat; the same as I use for my baking flour, but any kind of wheat kernel will do

The evening before, combine the wheat berries, water, and lemon juice in a pan.  Be sure to use non-reactive (non-aluminum, because of the acid) vessel.  I use a small stainless steel clad cook pot.  Allow to soak overnight.

The next morning, add another cup of water, the salt and any of the optional dried fruit, and bring to a rolling boil.  Turn down to simmer and allow to gently cook for about 10-20 minutes or so (depends on how "tender" you like them--longer = more tender).

Serve over a generous pat of butter, sweeten with brown sugar or honey, and pour over some real cream.
NB: You can use real sugar if you're able to burn off those extra carbs in the next few hours.  Otherwise, they'll just be stored as body fat--your call.