I think I may have a new favorite grain…and it’s called wheat berry. I first heard of wheat berries on an episode of Doctor Oz and I wasn’t sure if it was either a wheat…or a berry? Curious about this new food that had just been added to my vocabulary, I did some research.
Wheat berries are whole wheat kernels, and that is exactly what makes them so healthy. Because the whole kernel is in tact, all of the nutrients are still there. They are high in protein, iron, fiber, vitamin E, and magnesium.
There are several different types of wheat berries. There are hard red spring and winter wheat berries, which are the two types most commonly found in grocery stores. Both of these have a chewy texture. The other type is called soft, white wheat berries. They are starchy and have a softer kernel.
I’ve only ever had the hard red wheat berries, and the chewy texture is what I liked most about them. The first time I tried it was at a cute, little deli. It was some kind of wheat berry salad. I don’t really remember what it had in it though. But one thing I do remember is how delicious it was! I also kind of remember it having a balsamic kind of dressing.
All I wanted to do was experiment with my own wheat berry recipe after that! So I did, and it turned out to be even better than the salad I had at the deli.
The only downside about this grain: They take awhile to cook – about 40-45 minutes. Before you get too let down, wheat berries are great at soaking up flavors and dressings without getting soggy! So you can prepare a wheat berry salad, or just wheat berries plain and store them in the fridge, and they’re ready to be eaten on the spot whenever you’d like!
1 cup hard winter wheat berries
1 scallion, chopped,
1/2 red pepper, chopped
1 large carrot, chopped
1/2 cup red onion, chopped
2 T olive oil
1 1/2 T Balsamic Vinegar
1 Scallion, chopped
1. Add 1 cup of wheat berries to 3 cups of boiling water. Cover and simmer for about 45 minutes.
2. Saute red onions in a pan with 1 T of olive oil.
3. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix.
It tastes best if you let all the flavors really soak in for at least 20 minutes.