Freekeh (pronounced ‘free-kah’) is a super grain packed with nutritional benefits that I have wanted to try for the longest time. Thanks to my friends at Craft Resturant in Parkhurst I finally and I’m not disappointed! Craft have added the Chopped Mediterranean Salad, Chicken Freekeh Consomme Soup and Braised Beef Stew, all containing Freekeh, the menu and to celebrate the sent out the sweetest little recipe box. I’d seen freekeh on many international wellness blogs and was intrigued, the grain is young, green wheat that roasted over an open fire. This means that the straw and chaff burn off and gives a delicious nutty, smoky flavour and slightly chewy texture. This bowl of freekeh, butternut, chickpeas and rocket was absolutely delicious, filling and pretty easy to make! Chopping the pumpkin was seriously the most difficult part… see the recipe below!
1 small butternut
1/4 cup of pumpkin seeds
1 can chickpeas
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp paprika
1 bunch rocket
Craft Riata Dressing (or your own yoghurt/ coconut cream based dressing)
- Preheat oven to 220°C
- Chop butternut into small chunks. You can peel it or leave the skin on for extra fibre and flavour!
- Grease a baking tray and add the butternut along with a splash of olive oil and a generous sprinkle of salt and cumin. Roast the butternut for 45 minutes, or until soft and beginning to char around the edges.
- At almost the same time, bring a pot of water to boil. You will need 4 cups of water, add the freekeh with some salt, cover with a lid and boil on medium-high until the freekeh is soft and chewy. Once it’s done, mix in the paprika.
- While the butternut is int he oven and the freekeh is on the boil, toast the pumpkin seeds. Heat a dry pan on a medium heat setting and dry fry the seeds, once they begin to pop they are done.
- Prepare the chickpeas by draining the can, rinsing, adding salt and pepper and the juice of the lemon.
- Serve your bowl by dishing up a spoon of freekeh, some butternut, chickpeas, a handful of rocket and a dollop of CRAFT Raita dressing. Add salt to taste.
If you’d like to buy freekeh, you can try Wellness Warehouse and Faithful to Nature online, and Thrupps in Illovo (let me know if you know any places I can add to this short little list). Pricewise, it’s not the cheapest grain at a starting price of R58 for 200g but because it is so filling, the 100g in this recipe lasted me 3 meals, which would work out at just over R9.50 a portion.