Last Updated : May 25,2021
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Also Known as
Nachani, red millet, finger millet, nachni
What is Ragi, Nachni?Ragi is an extremely nutritious millet, that resembles mustard seeds in appearance. Finger millet is especially valuable as it contains the amino acid methionine, which is lacking in the diets of the poor who live on starchy staples such as cassava, plantain, polished rice or maize meal. A grain rich in protein, calcium, fibre and iron, ragi has traditionally been used across the world in varied food products.
The hull of the ragi grain is indigestible and therefore the grain is usually hulled before use. This process does not remove or damage the germ, and hence the nutritional content is not lost. The grain is then used as is, decorticated, ground into flour, or malted and ground into flour, which is used to make porridge, laddoo, chowder, ragi mudde, and some savoury snacks too.
Realising its health benefits, nowadays people have started mixing ragi with other grains like rice and wheat for preparing traditional dishes like idli, upma and rotis.
How to Select Ragi , Nachni
• Ragi is commonly available in millet and flour form.
• It is available in various pack sizes, and in bulk.
• Just as with any other food that you may purchase in the bulk section, make sure that the bins containing the millet are covered and that the store has a good product turnover so as to ensure its maximal freshness.
• Whether purchasing millet in bulk or in a packaged container, make sure that there is no evidence of moisture.
9 Uses of Ragi, Nachni1. Contrary to what people believe, Ragi is quite a versatile ingredient. It can easily be grounded up to prepare ragi flour which in turn can be used to prepare various dishes.
2. Ragi can be used to make a variety of breakfast dishes like ragi idli, dosa and upma either by itself or by simply combining it with other grain flours like jowar, bajra and whole wheat.
3. Ragi, a super grain with many nutrients, is used popularly to serve to infants and toddlers as it contains the protein and fiber needed for a healthy upbringing.
4. To prepare ragi for infants is very easy. You can even combine it with jowar and make a simple porridge out of it. For that, you have to pressure cook both the whole grains with some dates for sweetness, puree it and then cook again for some time.
5. Ragi flour can also be used to make sweets for a lot of occasions. Like whole wheat flour is used to make sweets, so it Ragi flour, which prove to be much healthier than the other options. Some of these are Ragi sheera or Ragi barfi.
6. To enhance the healthiness of Ragi, one can even bake it to make various types of snacks like crackers and chakli.
7. Ragi is also a great grain to be given to pregnant women for them to get their nutrients properly. Ragi Ladoo is a common ladoo that is given to women during their pregnancy.
8. Baking healthier substitutes with ragi is also super easy. It can be used to make Multigrain breads and muffins.
9. The most important use of ragi is its use in Rotis/parathas. It can be used to make stuffed parathas or chilas even, providing a refreshing change from the whole wheat rotis.
How to Store Ragi
• Store the millets in an airtight container in a cool, dry and dark place, where it will keep for several months.
11 Super Health benefits of Ragi, Ragi Flour + Healthy Recipes
1. High in Protein:One cup of whole Ragi Flour (144 grams) gives about 10.3 grams of protein. Very good source for Vegetarian. Protein is cricital to manage the wear and tear of the cells in the body and help transport oxygen to various parts of the body.
2.Ragi Benefits due to High Fiber:One cup of whole Ragi Flour gives about 16.1 grams of fibre. This fibre will keep you fuller for a longer time and avoid you from binge eating. Ragi flour being rich in insoluble fibre helps easy digestion and hence relieves constipation. Insoluble fibre does not dissolve in water and goes through your stomach without being processed helping other foods move through your system and out. Insoluble fibre keeps you healthier with a better digestive system (1).
3. Antioxidant Rich:Ragi has many antioxidants which help fight the body against infections. Antioxidants prevent oxidation and thus may help in reducing risk of cancer (2) (3).
Click here to know more about the 11 Super Health benefits of Ragi.
Nutritional Information for 1 cup Ragi Flour
One cup of Ragi Flour is 144 grams, which makes 6 rotis.
RDA stands for Recommended Daily Allowance.
10.5 grams of Protein
103 grams of Carbs
1.87 grams of Fat
407 mg of Phosphorus : 67.9% of RDA (about 600 mg for adult)
16.56 grams of High Fiber = 66.2% of RDA (about 25 to 30 grams)
197 mg of Magnesium (Mg) = 56.3% of RDA (about 350 mg )
0.6 mg of Vitamin B1, Thiamine : 50.4% of RDA (about 1.2 to 1.5 mg)
495 mg of Calcium (Ca) = 49.5% of RDA (about 1000 mg)
3.31 mg of Zinc = 33.1% of RDA (about 10 to 12 mg)
5.6 mg of Iron (Fe) = 28% of RDA(about 20 mg for women)
26.3 mcg Folate, Vitamin B9 (FA) = 26.3% of RDA (about 100 mcg)
0.27 mg of Riboflavin, Vitamin B2 = 24.8 % of RDA (about 1.1 mg)
10.5 g Protein = 19.1% of RDA (55 g)
1.58 mg of Vitamin B3, Niacin = 13.2% of RDA (about 12 mg)
587 mg of Potassium (K) :12.5% of RDA (about 4,700 mg)
60.4 mcg of Vitamin A = 2.5 % of RDA (about 2,400 mcg)
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