20 February 2011

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Nutritional Importance of Millets – Jowar or Bajra Bhakri – Indian Common mans food

Nutritional Importance of Millets – Jowar or Bajra Bhakri – Indian Common mans food

Main food - Africa and Asia

In Sri Lanka, Finger millet is called Kurakkan

Grown and consumed in Rajasthan, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra and Goa.

Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh Ragi Balls are made and consumed with Sambar.
Maharashtra and Karnataka – Bhakri or Roti
Goa - satva, pole (dosa), bhakri, ambil (a sour porridge)

Fermented millet is used to make a beer and the mash is distilled to make liquor

Using Ragi even dosa, laddu and idly is prepared. But our Indian politicians are planning to make beer or liquor using Millet before constructing schools and medical collages.

MILLETS are small- seeded variety of cereal crops.
Millet looks like little yellow pearls
From ancient times we humans are using millet in our food.
Millet is also fed to birds and used as cattle food.
Millet is gluten free grain.

There are many varieties of millet, but the four major types are Pearl, which comprises 40% of the world production, Foxtail, Proso, and Finger Millet.

Millets are more nutrient dense than wheat and rice.
Normally one can use Millets in different ways while preparing food, but best option is in form of Rotis or Bread.

There are different types of Millets are available.

Sorghum (jowar),
Pearl millet [bajra]

Used mainly in Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh
Calcium content in finger millet (ragi) is nearly 350mg for 100g whereas in wheat and rice it is even below 50mg.
The average protein content of ragi is 9.8 per cent with well balanced essential amino acids composition along with Vitamin A, Vitamin B and phosphorous.
Ragi is also good for diabetics because of slow release of sugars to the body.
Because of High Fiber content Ragi helps person to tackle constipation, high blood cholesterol and intestinal cancer.

Pearl millet [bajra] –
Used mainly in Rajasthan, Gujarat and Haryana
Bajra Roti is very famous.
Bajra Roti contains iron, phytochemicals that lower cholesterol, folate, magnesium, copper, zinc, and vitamins E and B-complex. It packs an additional punch since it contains all 13 essential amino acids
Bajra is good for bones and has higher energy content than other flours. It is also rich in calcium and unsaturated fats which are good for the body
It’s good to eat Bajra Rotis in winter.

Sorghum (jowar),
Used Mainly in Karnataka, Maharashtra, Rajasthan and Haryana.
Jowar is rich in potassium and phosphorus and also has good amount of calcium with small amounts of iron and sodium.
Jowar helps to maintain heart, body weight and arthritis.

In short good points of Millet are
1. Low in saturated fat
2. No cholesterol
3. Very low in sodium
4. No sugar
5. High in manganese
6. Prevent Heart Failure Use Daily

Eating foods high in insoluble fiber, such as millet, can help women avoid gallstones, shows a study published in the American Journal of Gastroenterology.

Increasing consumption of whole grains and fish could reduce the risk of childhood asthma by about 50%, suggests the International Study on Allergy and Asthma in Childhood (Tabak C, Wijga AH, Thorax).

Eating or Serving Millet 6 times week helps postmenopausal women with high cholesterol, high blood pressure or other signs of cardiovascular disease (CVD).

If you got money to spend on always purchase Organic Millet.
Reason - more nutritional value

Bhakri and Pitla is a famous recipe in Maharashtra and Gujarat

How to make Jowar Roti –

Ingredients –
1. 1 and half cup of water
2. 1 cup Jowar flour
3. Salt as per taste

How to Prepare Bhakri –
Heat water
Add salt
When water starts boiling add the jowar flour
Then keep stirring and mixing it until water is absorbed.
Then knead into firm dough, make balls, use flour and make round or circle shape bhakri.
Using hands spread them give them round shape.
Then fry them on the heated tava.

Reality Views by sm –

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Suggested Reading –

Recipe by Usha Grain Enriched Methi Roti


Amrit February 21, 2011  

Awesome information

Kirtivasan Ganesan February 21, 2011  

GOI should not use millets for beer, because it is a common man's food.
For rice and other grain eaters, urad dal is very important as it provides stickiness to the batter.
GOI should also make correct policy for urad dal.

Rama Ananth February 21, 2011  

What you have said is very correct. But still I see people going for the polished rice, maida, and all other useless things from which nothing good is gained. In our house we use only hand pounded rice/ brown and red rice, and all the grainy stuff, in certain dishes one will not even be able to make out that I have not used white rice.
Health is more important, and when we have in abundance all these healthy things to eat, why would anybody want to eat all the unhealthy stuff and then end up taking medicines to control their diseases, is something that I can never understand.

Teamgsquare February 21, 2011  

Wonderful info , aptly millets are common man s food .

sm,  February 21, 2011  

Team G Square,,

Usha February 21, 2011  

sm, Wonderful post. I just knew they are healthy but good to know more about nutritional details. I regularly use millet flours in roti/paratha and whole millet grains in Lentil curries..I am yet to perfect myself in making Jawar,Bajra roti, this post inspired me.

Thanks for referring Multigrain methi roti post.

sm,  February 21, 2011  


Rek Sesh February 22, 2011  

I have eaten bhakar (bajra roti)while in maharashtra...but its an acquired taste....I prefer a flavored drink called ragimalt mede of ragi flour and sweet condiments that u have as milkshake...little heavy in calories but tastes heavenly...
the govt will starve the common man and beer them up to fill their coffers.

raji February 25, 2011  

nice information.your blog should be renamed ..IT'S NOT JUST POLITICS TO FASHION BUT LOTS MORE:)

Prashant April 09, 2011  

Great article! In fact I am working with Govt institutions to develop products both in the Ready to Cook ( Grain Form) and Ready to Eat ( Heat & Serve) using Bajra, Jowar & Ragi. I am in the startup phase but looking at developing products that aid people suffering/fearing from diabeties,cardio vascular and high BP. Support on this would be most appreciated - be it in spreading the message or product development

You can reach me at prashant1211@gmail.com

sm,  April 09, 2011  


Unknown May 24, 2016  

Good information useful for everyone

indu August 15, 2016  

So tell me...do these get clubbed into carbohydrates? Thanks.

Unknown June 24, 2018  

Can I find bhakri or jawor floor in America?

Unknown June 24, 2018  

Was born and raised on farm in western Maharashtra,growing jawor but no wheat. Never had chapati but bhakri as a staple good. After 40 years in America and tired of eating unhealthy diet, where can I find jawor floor or bhakri ?

SM June 26, 2018  

you can find it but you will need to make your own Bhakri in your kitchen.