Summer Salads

Whole grains are all the rage these days – as evidenced by the plethora of different tips of quinoa, bulgar, and wheat berries available at my conventional grocer and the two features in Bon Apetit and Cooking Light that feature whole grain-salads. Not that I mind. These versatile grains combine easily with fresh ingredients and proteins for tasty and quick weeknight suppers, and even an easy meal for a larger gathering on the weekend.

Here are some summer salads to try. Start with a base of quinoa, bulgar, or wild rice.

Wild Rice Salad with Peaches, Pork, and Goat Cheese

  • 2 ounces chèvre
  • 2 large, ripe peaches
  • 1 handful of spinach (about half a cup, uncooked)
  • 1/4 cup almond slivers
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 large pork chop, grilled and sliced

This dish pairs best with wild rice. Combine the peaches, spinach, almonds, and cranberries in a dish. Add cooked wild rice and goat cheese, allowing the warmth from the rice to melt the goat cheese. Toss to cover. Add the pork, toss, and serve with salt and pepper to taste. The portions above serve two, with a small lunch serving remaining.

Non-traditional Tabouli Salad

Tabouli is traditional made using bulgar, however I find couscous and quinoa to be excellent substitutes. For the above tabouli, I used a whole bunch of fresh parsley and a large handful of mint.

  • 1 bunch parsley, finely chopped
  • 1 15oz can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 small red onion, finely chopped
  • Rind from one lemon
  • Juice from one lemon
  • Salt, pepper to taste

Combine the ingredients above with bulgar – or whole grain of you choice . Toss together and serve for a light and bright meal.


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