Saturday, June 16, 2012

Day 11 in Oaxaca, Mexico: Excursion to the outskirts of Oaxaca to learn about Amaranth!
Yesterday was amazing and educational! Me and my roommates shaili, katie, and lauren woke up very early to meet the group and professor for our excursion to learn about the grain  amaranth. I remember hearing about the grain before on television but I never payed attention to it. When we were heading to the farm I'll admit the scenery was gorgous. I'll admit I love taking pictures of mountains and anything that has a countryside feel to it. When we got the farm we met with a farmer who is from pensylvania but has helped for a while on the farm growing this essential grain. I found it interesting when he said that amaranth is loaded with protein and high in folic acid. I never knew that and what surprised me even more was how scarce it was. After the farmer lectured us on amaranth and what the group does we met with the locals to learn about the different soils that are used to grow amaranth and which ones are not good. After learning about the different soils and the plant I'm considering gardening again because I love having my own vegetables at my convenience instead of going to a store to buy it. After learning about amaranth me, my group, and my professor started planting amaranth seeds. It was daunting at first and it was hard because i saw these huge crickets that were freaking me out but I mangaged to put that fear aside. After we planted the amaranth we were taking to another site to harvest them and that's where things got interesting. I remember picking up a handful of amaranth and freaking out because I saw these weird bugs. Don't get me wrong I like the the harvesting but I hate bugs. After we brought the amaranth back for harvesting we were fed lunch that had the grain in it. I must say out of all the foods I've had here in Oaxaca I loved the lunch we had yesterday. We had pasta with amaranth in it, black beans, meatballs, and a tasty drink called chata. I had three helpings and the amaranth made the food not only tasty good but fill me up very quickly. The chata is composed of milk, rice, and amaranth. It tasted like the rice milk I have back in the United States but the drink was definently sweeter. I hope I can find chata when I get back to the states otherwise I will be disappointed. Overall, this day was amazing and I can't wait for the next excursion!

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