HOW WE WERE INTRODUCED TO PARCHED GRAINS

Anika Chrishon
My friend Yukari Masuda introduced us to parched grains during our family's recent visit to Japan in January 2010. She is the loving Christian mother of six children. In addition to teaching me how to make parched brown rice and wheatberries, Yukari taught me some valuable christian parenting lessons that have helped me as I train my three year old son, Samuel. Before every meal, Yukari and her family served us a bowl of parched rice and wheat berries. The first time they served parched grains to us we were waiting for them to give us soy milk so we could eat it like a bowl of cereal-but the soymilk never came. Instead, we were give some delicious dry seasoning to sprinkle on our grains. We chewed and chewed and chewed some more. It was a very different experience for our entire family, but we started to look forward to eating parched grains. After a few days of eating parched grains, I decided to spend some time in the kitchen with Yukari to learn how to make them so our family could still enjoy them once we returned to America. I watched Yukari for a couple of days, and then I started parching grains daily for everyone in the house. I wasn't very confident about my ability to do the entire process from start to finish and I had a lot of questions about parched grains, so before we returned to America Yukari presented me with a copy of a book called The Story of Parched Grains. The book was written by a young Korean man, Young-Sun Hong, and it is available in English, Korean and Japanese. As I started reading the book, I realized that parched grains are not only delicious but they also good for you. According to the book Counsels on Diet and Foods, foods that require thorough mastication are beneficial to the teeth and stomach. Thorough mastication leads to good digestion, good digestion leads to good blood, and good blood leads to good health. I was excited to learn about the potential health benefits of parched grains, but I was even more excited to learn that they are mentioned in the Bible several times. Here are a few Bible references to parched grains: Joshua 5:11 And they did eat of the old corn of the land on the morrow after the passover, unleavened cakes, and parched [corn] in the selfsame day. Ruth 2:14 And Boaz said unto her, At mealtime come thou hither, and eat of the bread, and dip thy morsel in the vinegar. And she sat beside the reapers: and he reached her parched [corn], and she did eat, and was sufficed, and left. I Samuel 17:17 And Jesse said unto David his son, Take now for thy brethren an ephah of this parched [corn], and these ten loaves, and run to the camp to thy brethren.

[Corn] is a supplied word.
One of my favorite verses about parched grain is from Ruth. The Bible tells us Ruth ate parched grains and was sufficed. This has been our family's experience also. When we eat a bowl of parched rice before our meals, our family leaves the table feeling much more satisfied without the undesirable stuffed feeling. Since we returned to America, I’ve tried making parched brown rice wherever we’ve been - at the home of my sister Abra, at the home of my friend Sara, and most recently at my mother’s. I am not an expert, but I would like to share the following directions with you that I’ve been using to make parched brown rice for my family and friends.

If you have any questions about parching, or if you would simply like to share your parching experience with me, please feel free to contact me at anikachrishon@gmail.com or 205-755-8934.

DIRECTIONS FOR MAKING PARCHED BROWN RICE
1. Rinse your desired amount of brown rice. (I suggest starting with a small amount of rice until you get the hang of parching.) 2. Soak the rice 24 hours.

3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place the rice in a casserole dish (not over half full) and add just enough water to cover the rice. Cover with foil and cook for 50 minutes. 4. Use a spoon and gently place the rice on a cookie sheet. Place the cookie sheet in a 100 degree oven. NOTE: You can also use a dehydrator set at 95 degrees for this step.

5. After about 3 hours check your rice. If it is getting hard, use your hands to break up the pieces and mix the rice so it can dry out evenly. If it is not getting hard, check back a little later and do this step. 6. After three more hours, check your rice again. It should be ready. If your rice is dry, take it out. If not leave it in the oven and recheck a little later. 7. Use a small/medium glass jar to break apart the pieces that are stuck together. NOTE: This is an important step because the rice doesn't parch if the grains are stuck together.

8. Place small amounts of rice in a strainer, and rub the rice between your fingers in order to strain out small particles of broken rice. NOTE: If you don't have a strainer, don't worry about this step.

9. Preheat a non-stick frying pan or wok over med/high heat for about 3-5 minutes. 10. Once the pan/wok is hot, place a handful of rice into it and use a wooden spoon or spatula to keep the grains of rice moving constantly in order to get even parching. When you see all of your grains expanding, you can lower the heat or hold the pan above the heat and move it around in a circular motion to keep the rice moving. Parching time is about 2-3 minutes. NOTE: Depending upon the type of stove you have, you may have more success holding the pan above the heat the entire time and moving it around in a circular motion in order to keep the rice moving. NOTE: Please wear oven mitts, as the handle on the pan/wok tends to get very hot.

11. Once the rice is parched, immediately pour the rice out of the pan/wok into a flat non-plastic container where they can cool off. 12. Keep parching until all of your rice is parched. 10. Once your parched rice has completely cooled off, store in a large glass jar with a lid, a plastic storage bag, or a plastic container with an air-tight lid. NOTE: Your grains can be kept for a long period of time, as long as moisture does not enter the container.

ENJOY your PARCHED RICE!

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