Grain salads and pilafs are some of our favorite ways to eat whole wheat berries. Use wheat berries on their own in these salads, or mix them with other grains like barley, quinoa, or rice.
John’s “Mojito” Wheat Berry Salad
1 c. dry wheat berries, cooked in 3 c. water until “al dente”
2-4 T olive oil
4 T lime juice
24 mint leaves, chopped
1/4 medium red onion, chopped
1 large cucumber, quartered and sliced
sea salt to taste (start with about 1 t.)
cayenne flakes to taste
Mix all ingredients and chill until flavors meld.
Molly’s September Salad
This recipe is based on one sent to us by our friend Clare of Mike and Clare’s Farm. She found it on Mark Bittman’s blog in a more summery variation called
Wheat Berries with Zucchini, Mozzarella, and Dill.
1⁄4 cup nuts (almonds, pecans, pine nuts), chopped, slivered, or whole
2 c. cherry tomatoes, halved
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and black pepper
2 cups cooked wheat berries*
1 teaspoon minced garlic, raw or roasted, or to taste
1⁄2 cup fresh basil, or 1 teaspoon dried
1.5 tablespoons sherry or white wine vinegar
1 cup cubed mozzarella or other light cheese, optional
Toast the nuts in a small, dry skillet over medium heat, shaking the pan occasionally, until lightly browned.
Toss together the tomatoes, wheat berries, garlic, and about half of the basil in a large salad bowl. Add the vinegar and oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and toss again. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary. (The salad can be made ahead to this point and refrigerated for up to a day.) To serve, toss the cheese into the salad, along with the remaining basil. Makes 4 servings. Recipe adapted from The Food Matters Cookbook.
*To cook wheat berries: add 1 c. dry wheat berries to 4 c. water in a saucepan. Boil for 30 minutes, then turn off, put a tight lid on the pot, and let sit for 30 minutes. Taste to be sure they are done – they should be nutty and mostly whole. Strain.
More wheat berry salad ideas: