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Add a “rye” of sunshine to your diet…

You probably have heard about the importance of including high fibrous foods in your diet right?
Well, you should and here is why.

Rye or rye berries (referring to the whole rye kernel) are considered a high fibrous (soluble fiber) food that include many health benefits . Rye has an advantage over many over milled/grinded grains in that rye has a higher fiber content after the inedible parts are removed. This is important since fiber helps to regulate blood sugar due to its low glycemic index (GI) and reduces your risk of non-communicable diseases such as various cardiovascular diseases and diabetes. Rye is also rich in various essential vitamins and minerals needed for optimal health. That is why the South African Food Based Dietary Guidelines recommends to make starchy foods such as rye, other whole grains and minimally processed grains and starchy vegetables part of most of your meals.

You need at least 25 g of fiber per day if you are female and 38 g of fiber per day if you are male. Remember to drink enough water when you follow a high fiber diet to avoid constipation.

Rye berries can be used as a substitute for rice or be used is salads, grain bowls, or in soups/stews. Rye flakes can also be used as a porridge.

How to cook rye berries

You do not have to soak rye berries before you cook them, but you can if you want to
The ratio is 1 cup rye to 3 cups water.
Bring a pot of water to boil (add a little bit of salt)
Add rye berries and reduce the heat to a low but steady simmer
Cover the pot and stir occasionally
Approximately 60 minutes (until chewy and tender)
Drain the water and there you have it!

Rye flour

I bet one thing comes to mind when you think of rye flour… Bread!

Rye flour is most often used to bake rye bread. Rye bread can be light or dark in color depending on the amount of rye flour used in the recipe. Rye bread is also much more dense than white or brown bread due to the high fiber content. Homemade Rye bread is a healthier option than highly processed breads that is mass produced.

A rye bread recipe you should try.

  • 1/2 cup warm water
  •  1 tablespoon honey
  •  1 sachet instant yeast
  •  1 cup milk, room temperature
  •  2 teaspoons oil
  •  2 tablespoons salt
  •  1 to 1 1/2 cups bread flour
  •  1 to 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  •  1 1/2 cups dark rye flour
  •  2 tablespoons whole seeds (any seeds you like)


  1. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with a hook attachment, combine the warm water and honey, then add the yeast.
  2. Add the milk, salt, oil, bread flour, whole wheat flour, rye flour, and seeds to the yeast mixture and knead on medium-low speed until the dough starts to come together.
  3. Increase the speed to medium-high and knead for 8-10 minutes until the dough is smooth and no longer sticking to the sides of the bowl.
  4. Place the dough in a large, lightly oiled container/bowl and cover with a towel.  Let the dough rise in a warm place until doubled in size, approximately 1 1/2 hours.
  5. When the dough has risen, punch it down and transfer to a clean work surface.  Let it rest for 5 minutes, then shape it into a loaf and transfer to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.  Cover with a towel and let rise for another hour until doubled in size again.  
  6. When the dough is close to being doubled in size, preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius.  Slash the dough with a sharp knife on top to create gashes.  Open the oven and throw a few ice cubes on the bottom when you place the bread in to bake or a baking pan with water.  This will create steam that will make for a great crust to the bread. 
  7. Bake for 30 minutes until crusty and golden brown.  

(recipe adapted from House of Nash eats- available online

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