What are spelt berries you ask? Spelt berries, or spelt is a nutty whole grain that is high in fiber and plant-based protein. It’s absolutely delicious in various dishes, especially salads such as this. With fresh ingredients such as lemon juice, parsley, tomatoes, and olive oil, this dish resembles the middle-eastern dish ‘tabbouleh’ but incorporates spelt berries along with creamy goat cheese and crunchy, sliced almonds. Bon appétit, ladies and gentlemen.
Time: 40 minutes, plus time to soak spelt berries
1 cup spelt or spelt berries
2 cups water
2 cups Persian cucumber, chopped
2/3 cup green onions, sliced thinly
2 cups arugula
3/8 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, minced
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
1 tablespoon grated lemon rind
Juice of 1 large lemon (about 3-4 tablespoons)
1 teaspoon sea salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
½ teaspoon honey
2.5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
20 black nicoise olives
¾ cup goat cheese, crumbled
¼ cup sliced almonds, for garnish
- Place spelt in a bowl of lukewarm water; cover for at least 1 hour or keep overnight.
- Drain the spelt berries. Place in a medium sized pot. Bring spelt to a boil along with 2 cups water and then reduce heat to low. Cook uncovered for 1 hour or until tender, taking care not to overcook (you want your spelt berries nutty and chewy, not soft). Drain well and rinse with cold water. Place in refrigerator and allow to cool while preparing other ingredients.
- Place cucumber, green onions, arugula, parsley, and tomatoes in a large bowl.
- In a separate bowl, prepare the dressing by combining lemon rind along with the lemon juice, kosher salt, black pepper, and honey. Gradually whisk in olive oil.
- Add spelt berries to salad and drizzle dressing over salad & toss well to coat. Stir in cheese and garish with sliced almonds and nicoise olives.
And sahtein—or deux healths!