Okay, I get it, you probably hate buckwheat or even worse, have no idea what kind of grain this is. Buckwheat or grechka in Russian is a staple in most post-Soviet and Asian countries. To be honest, I don’t know much about the history of the introduction of this nutritious food into our diets but all I know is that I crave it very often. Especially in cold weather, I get an immediate craving of these little brown beads that most accurately taste like fried pieces of bread but much healthier. The closest in taste to buckwheat is quinoa.
It is hard to describe grechka even to those who have tried it because a lot depends on how it has been cooked. My version of simple grechka is the following: rinse the buckwheat under tap water, heat good amount of oil in a deep pan, pour the buckwheat onto oil on high heat and fry it for a few minutes, add almost twice as much water to the pan and let it simmer for 20–25 minutes. Don’t forget to season it generously with salt, pepper and my special touch, cumin. I love cumin, particularly with grechka. When serving you can top it with avocado, cream cheese, eggs, green onions and whatever you feel like having. Anything goes with grechka!
Another popular recipe with this grain, which my mom has introduced me to, is the buckwheat porridge. I am not a huge fan of it but I used to like it as a kid. It is basically a soup with sweet milk and buckwheat. Not very appetizing…but regardless of the kind of grechka you are presented with, it is going to be a love-hate relationship. You either totally LOVE it or HATE it! I’m on the loving side and can attempt converting any hater.