Spiced Sweet Potato and Freekeh Salad with Pomegranate

December 12, 2016

Spiced Sweet Potato and Freekeh Salad with Pomegranate | A festive salad that's vegan and potluck friendly.

A few weeks ago I went to my good friend Ruth’s mother blessing (a mother-centred baby shower) and this is the salad I made to share with the guests. It was a hit, and lots of people were asking how I made it, so I figured I should work on transcribing a recipe to share with you!

I love grain salads because they’re substantial and practically a meal in themselves. They’re great for potlucks and lunch boxes, and are delicious both warm and cold. This Spiced Sweet Potato and Freekeh Salad has a lot going on in terms of texture and flavours, making it quite complex and definitely my favourite salad of the moment. 

Freekeh, a charred green wheat, has a lovely texture – a toothiness that works well with the soft roasted sweet potato I’ve matched it with here. If you are gluten intolerant, you could easily use a medium grain brown rice here instead.

I’ve paired the sweet potato and freekeh with herbaceous dill, preserved lemons, fragrant whole spices, and fresh pomegranate seeds that are like little jewels that burst with a tart sweetness. I think it’s perfectly balanced, and I hope you enjoy it too. Plus, the pomegranate gives this salad a festive charm, and what’s more, it’s perfect for both a Northern or Southern Hemisphere festive season… Such is the adaptability of the grain salad!

Spiced Sweet Potato and Freekeh Salad with Pomegranate | A festive salad that's vegan and potluck friendly.

Spiced Sweet Potato and Freekeh Salad with Pomegranate | A festive salad that's vegan and potluck friendly. Spiced Sweet Potato and Freekeh Salad with Pomegranate | A festive salad that's vegan and potluck friendly. Spiced Sweet Potato and Freekeh Salad with Pomegranate | A festive salad that's vegan and potluck friendly. Spiced Sweet Potato and Freekeh Salad with Pomegranate | A festive salad that's vegan and potluck friendly.

Spiced Sweet Potato and Freekeh Salad with Pomegranate 

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Time: 40 min
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Freekeh is a charred green wheat – make sure you get the cracked variety which cooks a lot quicker than the whole grain. Replace the freekeh with pearled barley or brown rice if you prefer. Preserved lemons are delicious, and easy to make your self, but replace with the zest of half a lemon if you’re unable to get them. To make it more substantial, top with a handful of toasted walnuts.

Serves 4-6.

Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 35 min

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Spiced Sweet Potato and Freekeh Salad with Pomegranate 

800g | 2 medium sweet potatoes, cut into 1-2cm chunks
4.5 tbls olive oil
240g | 1.5 cups cracked freekeh ***
2 tsp whole coriander seeds
2 tsp whole cumin seeds
200g | 1 large onion, halved and thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tbls | Juice of half a lemon
1/2 a preserved lemon, flesh discarded and rind rinsed and finely diced ***
1 bunch of dill, finely chopped
Seeds from half a pomegranate
Sea salt and pepper

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Set your oven to 200C.

In a large rimmed baking tray, toss the sweet potato in 1.5 tbls of the olive oil. Season with salt and roast in the oven for 30-35min, till potatoes are cooked through.

Meanwhile cook the freekeh in plenty of salted water – bring it to the boil then simmer gently for 20 min, till cooked through but still retaining its bite.

Whilst the freekeh is cooking, use a deep frypan over medium heat to fry the spices and onion with a few pinches of salt in 3 tbls of olive oil. Cook, stirring regularly, for 10 minutes till soft and golden – adding the garlic in the last few minutes of cooking.

Add the cooked freekeh to the frypan, tossing it well to cover it with the flavoursome oil and onions. Transfer it to a large salad bowl and add the lemon juice, preserved lemon rind, dill, and the cooked sweet potato. Season with plenty of salt and pepper, till the flavours pop on your palate.

Add half the pomegranate seeds, toss through, then top with the remaining to decorate.

This salad willl keep covered and refrigerated for up to 5 days, can be served hot or at room temperature.

Follow along with me on PinterestInstagram or Facebook! Make a recipe? Take a photo and tag me @libertybrowne or #homespuncapers!

 

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1 Comment

  • Reply Night Discourse December 13, 2016 at 2:46 pm

    One of my favourite recent recipes conjured up from Homespun Capers β€” the salad is delicious, and the liberal distribution of pomegranate seeds really does enhance the flavours with a refreshing sweetness for summer all its own!

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