Mile: property, virtues and recipes. Hints on how to grow millet, its beneficial properties, nutritional values and uses in the kitchen.
- The mile, origins and cultivation
Themileit is a very ancient cereal, its origin is still uncertain but it is assumed that it comes from Central Eastern Asia or India; it has been cultivated since the times of the ancient Egyptians, today it is widespread all over the world even if in the Old Continent its cultivation is rather sporadic.
Themile, known botanically asPanicum miliaceum, in the south it is called by the dialect nameVulpicoca or Vulp cocbecause the shape of its inflorescence is similar to the tail of a fox.
Themileit is a very demanding plant as regards temperatures: even if it is a perennial plant, in temperate climate areas it grows with spring-summer cycles. Apart from the climatic one, themileit has no particular needs, is perfectly resistant to drought and can be cultivated in low fertile soils, in arid or semi-desert areas.
As stated, in Italy, themileit can be grown in spring-summer cycles. You can sow themilein late April and harvest after just over two months.
Themileit's a "minor cereal "and in Italy it has been known since prehistoric times: in our country traces of the cultivation of millet have been found in tombs dating back to the Neolithic. It was widely used for human nutrition in Roman times and reached its maximum diffusion in the early Middle Ages.
As was the case with other products of the earth (see broad beans or the lesser known parsnip) during the Renaissance, themileit was supplanted by more productive cereals.
For centuries, themillet polentait was a traditional dish from northern Italy, in particular from the Veneto, Lombardy and Trentino regions.
- Millet, property and virtue
Themileit does not containglutentherefore it is suitable for celiac nutrition. Themileit has a rather high caloric content and is comparable to that of other dry cereals. It must be said, however, that the energy provided by millet derives mainly from complex carbohydrates. The fiber content is high and the micronutrients also boast substantial amounts. It is rich in vitamins and minerals, in particular it offers an excellent supply of iron and phosphorus.
How many calories does the Mile?
The calorie intake is 356 kcal for every 100 grams of product. Theshelled millet(i.e. deprived of its outermost skin) provides 174 mg of potassium, 3.5 mg of iron, 17 mg of Calcium and 300 mg of Phosphorus.
- The mile in the kitchen
We offer you a nice one recipe based onmile,perfect for vegetarian aperitifs or if you have a celiac for dinner:millet pancakes and croquettes.
Curiosities about mile in Italy
Three millet plants appear in the Miagliano coat of arms, a small town in the province of Biella. A bunch of millet also appears in the coat of arms of the municipality of Miglianico (from which it takes its name) in the province of Chieti.