Posted in Recipes on 17.06.2019
Wheat Berry Summer Salad
prep: 20 mins / cook: 1 hour 15 mins / inactive: 0 mins / total: 1 hour 35 mins / quantity: 4 servings Print recipe?
Plump little wheat berries mixed with tonnes of veggies, herbs and a creamy garlic, mustard and tahini dressing in this healthy summer salad!
Perfect for BBQ’s, picnics or livening up your lunch box this vibrant and fresh summer salad is an assembly of so many wonderful ingredients!
Front and centre star of the show for this summer salad recipe is the wheat berries – which are, quite literally, the berries from wheat plants. They’re the least processed form of wheat and contain all three parts of the grain. Since the wheat kernel is left intact, virtually none of the nutrients are stripped away. They’re high in fibre and protein but low in calories and carbohydrates. If you’ve followed us for a while you’ll have probably noticed we’re fans of Hodmedods. Amazing ingredients (some of which were completely new to me!) and all UK grown. I’d never used wheat berries before, but I absolutely LOVE experimenting in the kitchen. A dash of this, a sprinkle of that. How long to cook something for, making notes.
Baking (vegan or otherwise) is much more of an exact science though. Things have to be measured, not guesstimated. And I knew a lot of chefs that didn’t enjoy working in the pastry kitchen because of this. It’s less forgiving and there’s less room for error. Salad doesn’t have any of those kind of restrictions. It can be whatever YOU want it to be. Recipes are more of a guideline than a rigid set of instructions.
Take this summer salad recipe. I have a list of ingredients and amounts but add/takeaway according to YOUR taste. We’ve got:
Leeks and tomatoes – roasted with herbs and lemon.
Pine nuts – creamy and rich and full of heart healthy monounsaturated fatty acids.
Broccoli – for it’s beautiful bright green colour as well as its Vitamin C, K and folate content.
Lemon Tahini Dressing – nutty macadamia oil (or use your preferred oil) jazzed up with garlic, mustard, vinegar and tahini for a thick and dreamy cream dressing that I could slather over everything right now!
I roasted about half the tomatoes and kept the other half as just tomatoes. Roasting brings out their wonderfully rich flavour but I wanted the bright freshness of raw tomatoes too.
We’ve got plenty more ideas for you:
Spring Greens Salad – packed with green veggies and tonnes of crunchy flavour this bright spring greens salad is an easy vegan recipe showcasing the season’s best produce!
Pasta Salad – an all time classic, this one is BIG on flavour with a roasted vegetable sauce.
Herb and Lemon Tomato Salad – fresh herbs, zingy lemon, crusty bread and just 5 minutes to whip up
Thai Quinoa Salad with Almond Butter Dressing – this is a lunchbox favourite for us, so many wonderful healthy ingredients and a divine salad dressing.
Roast Carrot and Smoked Quinoa Salad with Cauliflower Steaks – more herbs, garlic and fresh lemon pack flavour into the veggies, contrasting superbly with the smoked quinoa.
Warm Peach and Sweet Potato Salad with Balsamic Dressing – peppery rocket topped with warm summer fruit and salty pecans. Summery heaven.
Like all these salads this bright vegetable salad also keeps really well for a few days in the fridge. Just keep the dressing separate until you’re ready to eat! Serve it with marinated baked tofu or hunks of crusty bread for an impressive summer feast!
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Wheat Berry Summer Salad
prep: 20 mins / cook: 1 hour 15 mins / inactive: 0 mins / total: 1 hour 35 mins / quantity: 4 servings
- 1 + 1/2 cups (270g) Hodmedods Wheat Berries
- 5 cups (1.2 litres) vegetable stock
- 1 medium leek
- 1/2 lemon – juice only
- 1/2 tsp dried rosemary (or use a couple of sprigs of fresh if you have it)
- 2 cups (400g) cherry tomatoes
- 3 sprigs fresh thyme (or sub with 1/2 tsp dried thyme)
- 2 cups (1/2 a head) of broccoli broken into small florets
- 1/4 cup (40g) pine nuts
- Couple of drizzles of olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- 3 tblsp oil – I’ve tried this salad with macadamia nut and avocado oil but use what you’d prefer!
- 3 tblsp light tahini
- 2 tblsp apple cider or white wine vinegar
- 1 clove garlic – peeled and crushed
- 1 tsp wholegrain or Dijon mustard
- few grinds of black pepper
- 3-4 tblsp cold water
- Put the wheat berries into a pan with the vegetable stock, bring to the boil then simmer over a low/medium heat for 1 hour to 1 1/4 hours, stirring occasionally. Check after an hour by carefully tasting - there should be a little bit of bite in the wheat berries but not too firm or crunchy! Top up with extra veg stock or water if the pan starts to boil dry
- While they're cooking preheat the oven to 180 Fan / 200 C / 400 F / Gas 6
- Cut the leeks into 1/2 inch (1 cm) chunks and wash and drain well. Put onto a roasting tray with the juice from 1/2 a lemon, a drizzle of olive oil, the rosemary and a good pinch each of salt and pepper
- Halve 1 cup (200g) of the cherry tomatoes and lay into another roasting tray with a drizzle of oil and a pinch each of salt and pepper
- Put both the trays in the oven and roast for 20 minutes - after 10 minutes give the leeks a stir. Once cooked set aside to cool
- Cook the broccoli florets in boiling salted water until just tender. Drain, refresh under cold water and put into a large bowl
- Halve the remainder of the cherry tomatoes and add to the broccoli along with the pine nuts
- Whisk together all the ingredients for the dressing
- When the wheat berries are cooked rinse under cold water then put into the bowl with the raw tomatoes
- Add the cooked tomatoes and leeks and stir everything together until very well mixed
- Stir through the dressing, taste for seasoning and serve
- If you're making ahead of time, store the salad and dressing separately and mix together when ready to serve
Some products I used in today's post...
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Hello and welcome to The Cook & Him.
We are Sam (The Cook), Phil (Him) and our little dog Meg. What started with a plan to shed a few pounds back in 2016, soon became obvious that eating healthy doesn’t have to be bland and boring.
So, combining Sam’s 15 years of experience working within Michelin starred restaurants and our love for deliciously healthy food, we’re creating recipes for you to make and enjoy. We’ve added our own unique spin on traditional and contemporary vegetarian and vegan recipes that keep you (and your pets!) healthy and full. And we make sure they just work.
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