Organic Spelt Berries
Spelt berries are the whole grain form of spelt. They have a wonderfully complex flavor, and can be used as you would wheat berries.
Spelt is believed to increase energy (offering a more sustained energy release as measured on the glycemic index) and, although it contains gluten, it can be a safe alternative to wheat for people with certain wheat allergies.
Because both emmer and spelt are higher root-mass crops than conventional wheat, they draw up more of the soil’s nutritious vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants than wheat, storing them in their grain. Spelt grain is particularly high in zinc, an essential nutrient tied to better immune system functioning.
This spelt is grown on a family farm on the Columbia Plateau of Eastern Washington, which is known for superior quality cereal grain production because of its arid climate and fertile, mineral-rich soils.
RECIPES & TIPS
Use cooked spelt berries in salads, soups, stews, and as a rice substitute. For more tender cooked spelt, soak the berries in water for eight hours prior to cooking.
To cook spelt berries on the stove, use a ratio of 1 part berries to 3 parts water or stock. Bring the water to a boil and stir in the spelt. Reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer until tender (about 45-60 minutes).
Spelt berries can also used to make home ground flour. Because they are harder than wheat, the resulting flour will have an exceptionally fine consistency. Spelt flour can be used in bread making as a wheat substitute, though you should use 25% less water, and keep mixing/kneading times below 4 minutes. The same gluten/gliadin structure that makes spelt a better choice for wheat allergies can break down if over kneaded.
Home brewers sometimes use spelt berries in homemade spelt “wheat beer,” and they are said to produce excellent whiskey and beer when malted.