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Seeds & Stuff

Buckwheat 'Kora'

Buckwheat (Fagopyrum esculentum) is an annual plant that belongs to the Polygonaceae or knotweed family. As a food, buckwheat is grown for its seed which is made into gluten free flour or groats. It is the flour used for the Breton galette -  a delicious savory pancake. I have not done much cooking with the groats but they are a staple in Eastern Europe and Russia. I have a Polish friend who is still traumatised from being overexposed as a child.

'Kora' is a variety which is noted for being resilient to spring frosts as well as drought. It ripens in about 12 weeks. I planted it a bit late this year, around mid June. I learned the hard way about the difficulty in timing the seed harvest. Buckwheat seeds ripen unevenly and they mature while the plant is still largely green. They are normally harvested when 3/4 of the seeds are brown. So some of the first seeds will be lost and a proportion will be immature. It is a small harvest window and if left too late shattering will occur and a lot of the seed will be lost. This happened to me, and alongside the awful weather at ripening time, led to a small yield.

I am still trying to figure out how to process the seeds into an edible form. Apparently they can be lightly roasted, milled and then sieved to get a flour which will have most of the hull removed.

Average 250 seeds per packet.