I bought the ingredients for this dish last week. It didn't make it on to the menu for a variety of reasons, but made a stunning debut last night instead. It was quick, delicious and really satisfying. I still think it odd that such a salad was featured in the January/February issue of Cooking Light instead during the summer months, but that doesn't change the fact that I really loved this recipe.
Reading as many cooking and health magazines as I do, I know that grains like spelt are wonderfully healthy and a marvelous addition to one's diet. But, that doesn't change the fact that when I hold the bag in my hand, I have NO idea what to do with it! Following this recipe made for a structured yet easy first experience. I will definitely make this again, both for the ease of preparation and the versatility of the recipe. I could see adding a variety of ingredients (including but not limited to cubed tofu, chickpeas, hearts of palm, bell pepper, carrots, cucumbers etc) and will treat it as a jumping off point for future experimentation.
My changes this time around - I added a chopped clove of garlic, and sauteed the onion and garlic briefly with a little non-stick cooking spray. I personally don't care for raw onion. I used cannellini beans, and I added one tablespoon of lemon flavored olive oil (one tablespoon regular olive oil and one tablespoon lemon flavored olive oil). I also added half a cup of crumbled feta cheese. And I didn't measure the herbs, but grabbed a big handful and chopped from there.
Spelt Salad with White Beans and Artichokes
From Cooking Light
Spelt (also called farro) is a high-protein grain with a mellow nutty flavor, and it provides an alternative to bulgur for those who have wheat allergies. (Bulgur is a good substitute if you do not have spelt for this dish.) It's nice chilled or at room temperature. Include a cluster of red grapes and crusty Italian bread in your bag.
1 1/4 cups uncooked spelt (farro), rinsed and drained
2 1/2 cups water
1/3 cup chopped fresh mint
1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup minced red onion
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 (15-ounce) can navy beans, rinsed and drained
1 (14-ounce) can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
Combine spelt and 2 1/2 cups water in a medium saucepan; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 30 minutes or until tender and liquid is absorbed.
Combine cooked spelt, mint, and the remaining ingredients in a large bowl, stirring well. Cover and store in the refrigerator.
Yield: 5 servings (serving size: 1 cup)
NUTRITION PER SERVING
CALORIES 204(29% from fat); FAT 6.5g (sat 0.8g,mono 4g,poly 0.9g); PROTEIN 7.4g; CHOLESTEROL 0.0mg; CALCIUM 40mg; SODIUM 437mg; FIBER 4.9g; IRON 3.2mg; CARBOHYDRATE 30.7g