Summertime. It’s that season when you’re asked to bring a dish to the block party, pre-fireworks picnic, or backyard barbecue.
Sure, your black bean and corn salad is damn tasty, but are you bringing that AGAIN? Branch out a little with freekeh, an ancient grain that’s seeing a resurgence.
Freekeh is made from roasted green wheat, and it’s touted as a superfood due to its high protein and fiber content. It’s wonderful as a pilaf or the base for a great summer salad. You can find it locally at Whole Foods Markets, or by the case at Freekeh Foods.
Mediterranean Freekeh Salad
- One 8-ounce package cracked freekeh (about 1 cup), Original or Rosemary Sage Variety
- 2 1/2-3 cups water or vegetable broth
- 1 1/2 cups pitted Kalamata olives, halved
- 1 1/2 cups fire-roasted tomatoes (try the Muir Glen Organics), drained, or substitute same amount of chopped fresh tomatoes
- 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
- 1 cup fresh mozzarella pearls (the tiny bocconcini), drained
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
- One 14-ounce can cannellini or garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- Sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1. Cook freekeh in water or vegetable broth as per package instructions. Turn out into large bowl and allow to cool.
2. When freekeh is room temperature, add in olives, tomatoes, pine nuts, mozzarella pearls, basil and beans. Stir to mix.
3. In a measuring cup, combine lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper. Pour dressing over freekeh mixture and toss lightly. Correct seasoning as needed. If you like a “wetter” salad, you can increase the lemon juice to 3 tablespoons and the olive oil to 1/3 cup.
This is great as a side dish to grilled chicken or shrimp!
Adapted from a recipe by Bonnie Matthews, co-founder of Freekeh Foods.