Grain salads are a great addition to any brunch, lunch or dinner menu. This one is hearty and delicious, with bright, fresh springtime flavours and colours. Freekeh is a fantastic superfood also known as cracked green wheat. It’s an ancient grain that is high in fibre with a low glycemic index, making this dish as nutritious as it is pretty.
- 1 cup (250 mL) freekeh, bulgar or quinoa
- 1½ cups (375 mL) orange juice
- ½ cup (125 mL) water
- 2 tbsp (30 mL) olive oil, divided
- 1 tsp (5 mL) salt
- 2 tsp (10 mL) grated ginger root
- 18 stalks of asparagus, cut in 1”/2.5 cm pieces
- 1 sweet red pepper, diced
- ½ cup (125 mL) fresh or frozen green peas
- 2 navel oranges, peeled and sectioned
- 4 green onions, minced
- ¼ tsp (1.25 mL) cayenne pepper, or to taste
- ¼ cup (60 mL) toasted walnut or pecan pieces
- ¼ cup (60 mL) chopped fresh parsley, for garnish
In a large saucepan, combine freekeh, orange juice, water, 2 teaspoons (10 mL) of olive oil, salt and ginger. Cover and place over medium-high heat and bring to a boil, then immediately reduce heat to low. Simmer 15–20 minutes until all the water has been absorbed. Turn off heat and let stand 5 minutes.
While freekeh cooks, sauté asparagus in 2 teaspoons (10 mL) of olive oil in a broad, shallow pan for 2 minutes, stirring often. Add pepper and peas and sauté one additional minute. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
Transfer cooked freekeh to a serving bowl and add asparagus, peppers, peas, oranges, green onions, cayenne and nuts and stir gently to combine.
Drizzle remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil over salad and stir gently. Top with parsley and serve warm or at room temperature.