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Alegria - Amaranth Bars

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Cookies Grains


  • 1/2 c Amaranth; divided use
  • 1/2 c Pure maple syrup


INTRO - In Mexico and India, cakes or bars of sweetener-bound popped amaranth are often sold by street Vendors. Known as alegria in Mexico and luddos in india, these sweet treats are rather like sesame candy in appearance. The only trick to popping amaranth is having a very hot and thin pan -- and it's a trick worth learning. You will also need a candy thermometer. Alegria means happy in Spanish and that's how this candy makes you feel.
1) Heat a wok (preferably deep) or large saucepan (not a cast iron pot or a pan with low sides) over high heat. Add 1/4 cup of the amaranth and stir constantly until most of the grains have popped and those that do not pop are a shade or two darker. Remove from the pan. Repeat with the remaining amaranth. Set aside.
2) Place syrup in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a soft boil. Boil for about 7 minutes or until it reaches 244 degees F. on a candy thermometer. Stir in amaranth, stirring just enough to coat. Scrape onto a large platter. Smooth out to l/2-inch thickness, allow to cool for 2 minutes or until it is partially set. Cut into fingers. Wrap any that are not eaten immediately airtight and store in a cool, dry place. These will keep for a month or more
Rebecca Wood, Exotic Grains 1999: paper presented at the IACP April 1999.
MC sent by 4/22/99
Recipe by: Rebecca Wood, Exotic Grains 1999
Posted to EAT-LF Digest by PatHanneman <> on Apr 22, 1999, converted by MM_Buster v2.0l.