Wheat berries are whole-wheat kernels that contain the bran, germ, and endosperm.  By nature, this whole food offers a high nutritional profile. It is full of fiber, protein, and is a good source of B vitamins, iron, folate, and calcium.

In traditional Chinese medicine, the wheat berry is used to strengthen vital energy, or “qi”, which can be helpful in overcoming a host of health issues, including depression and gastrointestinal disorders. With its versatility and adaptability to hold up in almost any dish, the wheat berry is a great choice to add variety and a burst of nutrition to any meal.

Warm Fruited Wheat Berry Salad

(Serves 2 as a main dish, 4 as a side)

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 shallot, diced
  • 1 stalk of celery, diced
  • 1 cup wheat berries
  • 4 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • 3-4 branches of fresh thyme, removed from stem
  • ¼ cup dried cranberries, cherries, or raisins 

DIRECTIONS

  1. Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large pot.  Add the shallot and celery to the pot and sauté for approximately 5 minutes, just until the shallots are translucent.
  2. Add the wheat berries and stock to the pot and bring to a boil.  Stir in the poultry seasoning and thyme, and cover the pot, turning the heat to low. Continue to cook for approximately 40 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the wheat berries are tender.
  3. Add the dried fruit to the pot, and continue to cook for an additional 5 minutes (the fruit should plump and be warmed through).
  4. Serve with pepper and a sprinkling of fresh thyme.

Have you tried wheat berries before? Are you planning to include this recipe in an upcoming meal? 

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