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General information and profile:
oats or Avena describes a genus of more than twenty species within sweet grasses, which are native to much of southern Europe, as well as North and West Africa. Only one species within the genus, Avena sativa, is cultivated as a crop for the production of food and feed and is commonly known as seed oats or simply oats. The grasses grow as annuals and have a round, hollow hollow stem. In contrast to other types of cereal, oats do not produce ears of wheat, but flower spikes and are therefore not closely related to wheat. The grains are trapped in husks that have to be removed after harvest in the course of industrial operations. Meanwhile, however, there are also varieties of oat species without husks. Avena sativa reaches stature heights of at most one and a half meters and develops about twenty to thirty centimeters long, often branched flower panicles, which gradually tend to grow down. The pollination of the flowers is weather dependent. In dry and warm climate it takes place over the wind, in the rain the flowers close and are fertilized by self-pollination.
History of the cultivation of oats:
Cultured oat looks back on a long history of cultivation dating back several thousand years. Originally the wild oats come from the Black Sea area and spread from there in Asia and throughout Europe. The oldest evidence for a specific breeding and culture of Avena sativa in the Bronze Age comes from Switzerland. In Central Europe, until the Middle Ages it was an important staple food, which was processed into different foods. When the overseas potato came to Europe with the colonial rulers, the oats became increasingly meaningless, until it was only used as feed for livestock from the 18th century. In addition, compared to other crops, it provides very little output and has gradually been replaced by them. Today, oats are grown as summer crops in the foothills of the Alps and in the low mountain range, in southern regions also in coastal areas. It prefers a temperate climate and thrives best in rainy seasons. Oats have been revitalized as a staple food for several decades, as it is increasingly being integrated by health-conscious people into a wholesome diet and used as a nutrient-rich substitute for wheat products.
Use of oats:
Probably the best-known oatmeal product is oatmeal, which is available as large-leaved flakes and small-leaved flakes. Larger varieties are often consumed in cereal mixes or boiled in milk, water or fruit juices to prepare a wholesome and wholesome breakfast. On the other hand, small leaf flakes are used to make bread and baking mixes, crispy crusts for oven dishes, and as an ingredient for meat stews and other spicy dishes. For bread and biscuits, however, they must be mixed with wholemeal flour, since baked goods made from oats alone are extremely dry and thus barely edible. Oats and oat flakes are also becoming increasingly popular and are used as instant products for the preparation of soups, sauces and baby food. For people who suffer from lactose intolerance or who eat vegan, oatmeal made from molten flakes is a sensible alternative.
Oats are characterized by a pleasantly nutty aroma and a high content of bioavailable nutrients and healthy fatty acids, which can contribute significantly to the strengthening of the organism with regular consumption of porridge or mueslis. Oats are rich in calcium, zinc and iron, valuable plant proteins and biotin. Unsaturated fatty acids in oats have a positive effect on the blood vessels and, if consumed regularly, can probably reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.