Freekeh is one of the best grains out there. It has a lot of fiber and a nutty but fresh taste. This is probably because it’s wheat that has been harvested when still young. The dried wheat is then carefully burnt, so the seeds remain intact. This is what gives them their special flavor. Freekeh is a typically middle eastern food, but in Germany we have a very similar thing called Gruenkern, which is spelt processed in a similar way. Gruenkern is one of the foods of my childhood, it’s actually delicious! Today I mostly eat it in salads, such as this one, which has a nice mix of flavors and textures with the fresh figs and the roasted aubergine. The tahini dressing is my new favorite, it’s good in everything but goes especially well with this salad I find.
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Socca is a delicious, light but flavorful chickpea-flour pancake from Southern France (and similar things exist in other countries of course, Italy for example, where it’s called farinata). It’s actually street food, so it’s simple and easy to make and tastes great even without any special toppings. A little ground cumin in the dough helps to enhance the slightly earthy chickpea flavor, and sea salt and olive oil round it off.
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The last few weeks have been quite eventful for me and I can’t wait for the beginning of the summer break. In such exciting and hectic times it’s nice if something works out without much effort or any trouble, as was the case with this improvisational recipe, which resulted in a not only edible but delicious vegan rhubarb and hazelnut cake. It is sweetened only with raw cane sugar and rice syrup and contains (soy) yogurt instead of eggs and olive oil instead of butter. The rhubarb is roasted for a few minutes first, so it becomes a little sweeter, even though I really like the special slightly sour taste of rhubarb.
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Just in time before the season is over, a white asparagus recipe. I had this first at a friend’s birthday party, it had been prepared by another guest and was absolutely delicious. It’s strange how well white asparagus and cilantro go together, two things I would have never considered combining until I tried this pasta dish. The cilantro somehow enhances the asparagus and both flavors come out clear and strong. Even better, it only takes a handful of ingredients. I used whole spelt noodles here, but regular spaghetti work just as well of course. Too bad white asparagus season lasts just a few short weeks…
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Spring seems to have finally arrived in Berlin, just when – as every year – the cold and grey skies began to feel almost unbearable. Now the city is exploding with green and flowering trees and the collective mood seems to brighten a bit. In tune with this transition, the salad here is a delicious and energizing spring dish; the addition of mint makes it light and fresh, whereas the sweet potatoes with the cinnamon give it a nice sugary note. Lately I started mixing grains into my salads and bulgur is one of my favorites in this regard since it’s light and fluffy but still substantial enough. And leafy greens are something we should probably all eat more of. The vinaigrette of lemon and olive oil is probably my favorite dressing, and healthy too. You can of course omit the feta cheese to make the salad vegan, or maybe add some smoked tofu instead.
[Read more…] about Green bulgur salad with sweet potatoes and mint