Green amaranth is one of my favourite wild vegetables - it's a delicious and versatile plant that I use in quite a lot of recipes. Below are a couple of family favourites.
Green Amaranth Pasta
Cooked pasta spirals
Green amaranth leaves
One small finely diced red onion
A little olive oil
Grated Parmesan cheese
Steam whole or sliced fresh amaranth leaves until dark green and wilted and combine with the cooked pasta spirals and remaining ingredients except the Parmesan cheese. Serve in bowls or on plates and sprinkle with a generous amount of the grated Parmesan cheese.
Note: Ingredient amounts depend on how many serves you want to make. To serve two people I cook one cup of dried pasta spirals and add the remaining ingredients to taste allowing half to one cup of green amaranth leaves for two serves.
Green Amaranth Quiche
Shortcrust pastry to line a quiche dish
1 Cup cream
1 Cup grated cheddar cheese
3 Shallots or 1 small red onion
1 Packed cup of fresh green amaranth leaves
Lightly butter the quiche dish and line with the pastry. Bake blind at 190° C for 15 minutes. In the meantime steam the green amaranth leaves and slice the shallots or onion and cook in a little olive oil until tender and drain on paper towel. Remove the pastry base from the oven and allow to cool while preparing the remaining ingredients. Beat the eggs and cream together and season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle the cooked shallots or onion over the base, add the green amaranth leaves spreading them evenly and top with the grated cheese. Gently pour the cream and egg mixture over the shallots and amaranth leaves. Bake for 45 minutes or more at 190º C. Remove the quiche from the oven and let it rest for 5 minutes before serving.
There are many ways to cook green amaranth leaves; they can be used in lasagne, stews, soups, and they are delicious steamed and mixed in mashed potato or served as a vegetable dressed with Balsamic vinegar and olive oil. One of my family's favourite dishes is Green Amaranth and Fetta Triangles - I use steamed amaranth instead of spinach and it's much tastier.