Has everybody heard about freekeh? I hadn’t, but apparently it’s all the rage and has just hit the UK, so when I was invited to give it a try and tell you all about it, I simply couldn’t refuse. Before I tell you all about it, I’d like to clear up the pronunciation. Unfortunately it is not pronounced ‘freekayyy’ but ‘freek-ah’, don’t let that stop you having fun, call it what you want, I just thought it would be good for you all to be in the know.
So freekeh is an ancient grain, made from young grains of wheat harvested at their nutritional peak and then lightly toasted. When I heard this I was thinking along the lines of quinoa and cous cous but it’s actually a lot more like rice, considering the fact that it has 4 times the fibre of brown rice, this is already a big win. It has more protein per 100g than a boiled egg and is a rich source of source of Calcium, Iron, Potassium, Magnesium and Zinc.
To cut a long story short, freekeh is pretty damn healthy, it’s pretty damn tasty, and you should probably give it a try. You’ll notice that the onions in this recipe aren’t fried. Usually I might caramelise red onions for a dish like this, but who am I to put fried food into something that’s otherwise the peak of healthy cooking. The method I use to soften the onions leaves them with a little bite and flavour, but without the eye watering strength of them in their mighty raw state.
1 cauliflower, chopped into little florets
2 small red onions, sliced
100g mejool dates, stoned (no laughing) and chopped
pinch of salt
1 tsp chilli flakes
1 tsp paprika
olive oil for glugging
juice of 1 lime
little glug of olive oil
squeeze of agave nectar
salt and pepper to taste
- Pre heat your oven to Gas Mark 8 (conversions here)
- Toss the cauliflower in a large roasting dish with the spices, salt and a glug of olive oil. Put them on the top rack of the oven for 20 minutes.
- Once the cauliflower has been roasting for 10 minutes, throw the cashews in there, give the dish a good shake and put it straight back in the oven.
- Meanwhile, get your freekeh on the boil. 100g freekeh wants 500ml boiling water, put on a high heat until boiling then allow to simmer for 15 minutes.
- Put your onions and dates in a heatproof bowl and cover with almost boiling water for 10 minutes then drain with a seive.
- Drain the freekeh, put it in a large mixing bowl then add the cauliflower, cashews, and the onions and dates.
- Mix the dressing ingredients together (a good shake in a jam jar usually does the trick for me) then pour over the freekeh and serve warm.
I used freekeh from Artisan Grains, who have now made this up and coming super grain available to everyone for £1.49 per 200g pack (that’s twice the amount used in the above recipe) so get out and try it for yourself.
What could the track recommendation for this recipe be other than Super Freak, go get your freekeh on.
Thanks for reading x