Saffron Buttered Millet with Roasted Red Pepper Cream Sauce Recipe

Saffron Buttered Millet with Roasted Red Pepper Cream Sauce Recipe

  • Makes: 4 Servings
  • Ready In: 40 mins
  • Prep Time: 15-20 mins
  • Cook Time: 25-30 mins

The unique flavor of saffron gives this whole grain just the right touch of flavor to compliment its sweet earthiness.

Original recipe by C. Lair, 2009.

    Nutritional Information (per serving)

  • Calories: 237
  • Fat: 16g
  • Protein: 5g
  • Sodium: 449mg
  • Carbohydrates: 18g
  • Fiber: 4g
  • Sugar: 6g


  1. ¾ cup millet
    3 tablespoons butter, divided
    ¼ teaspoon saffron
    1 2/3 cup water
    ½ teaspoon salt
    ¼ cup toasted almonds, chopped
    ½ cup currants
    ½ leek, chopped fine
    2-3 red bell peppers

    Roasted Red Pepper Cream Sauce:
    1/2 of a red pepper, roasted
    3 tablespoons sour cream
    1 tablespoon lemon juice
    1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon sea salt


    1. Place millet in a saucepan.
    2. Wash and rinse several times until water is fairly clear. Make sure most of the water is strained out the last time. Then turn on the heat and toast the millet until it is completely dry and giving off a nice fragrance. Add 2 teaspoons of the butter in saucepan. Add millet and sauté until grains are coated.
    3. Place saffron in a packet made of foil. Toast over a flame until the scent releases. Remove from packet and grind with a mortar and pestle.
    4. Add water, salt and toasted saffron to millet. Bring to a boil, lower heat and simmer until all water is absorbed, 25-30 minutes. Uncover and let stand for 10 minutes.
    5. Toast almonds in 300 degree oven until they have changed color and give off fragrance.
    6. Melt remaining butter in a large skillet. Add currants and leek sauté until both have brightened then add roughly chopped almonds. Slowly add millet, stirring constantly until millet and leeks are evenly mixed.
    7. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Cut bell peppers in half and seed. Use the third bell pepper if you plan to make the red pepper cream sauce. Place face down on a lightly oiled cookie sheet and roast until the skin just begins to blister but the peppers are holding their shape nicely, about 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly. Fill each pepper with a generous amount of the millet and serve immediately. Top with Roasted Red Pepper Cream Sauce (see below) if desired.
    8. Allow roasted red pepper to cook. Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth and creamy. Use as a topping for the millet dish.

Cynthia Lair

Cynthia is an Assistant Professor and Culinary Curriculum Director at Bastyr University. She is also the host of the online cooking show Cookus Interruptus featuring over 170 recipes and the author of Feeding the Whole Family and the new Feeding the Young Athlete. Watch her TEDx talk How to Cut an Onion!

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