By Freya Bellin
If you’re in search of a great picnic dish, look no further. This recipe is summery and herby, while still hearty enough to fill you up. Wheat berries are an unusual grain: dense, chewy, and very nutty. That texture is a great vehicle for pillowy broiled zucchini and rich, creamy pine nuts. Mozzarella adds a nice saltiness (I recommend fresh) and pairs surprisingly well with dill. Just keep in mind that wheat berries can take almost 2 hours to cook, so plan ahead or substitute in another grain in a pinch. This salad tastes great at room temperature—partly what makes it an excellent picnic candidate—but the flavors get a little muddled over time. Just add some fresh dill and cheese to brighten up the dish before serving. Recipe from The Food Matters Cookbook.
Wheat Berry Salad with Zucchini and Mozzarella
Makes: 4 servings
Time: 20 minutes with cooked grains
Assuming you have some kind of cooked grains in the fridge (always a good idea), this salad comes together quickly. Wheat berries are my first choice because of their unsurpassed chewiness, but even small grains like rice, cracked wheat, quinoa, and whole wheat couscous (or even cut pasta) work just fine. Roasted bell peppers are a tasty and colorful addition, especially ones that you make yourself. And if you’ve got roasted garlic handy, it’s a beautiful change from the raw garlic here.
1⁄4 cup pine nuts
3 or 4 medium zucchini (about 1 1⁄2 pounds), halved lengthwise
1⁄4 cup plus 1 tablespoon olive oil
Salt and black pepper
2 cups cooked wheat berries
1 teaspoon minced garlic, or to taste
1⁄2 cup fresh dill, or 1 teaspoon dried
3 tablespoons sherry or white wine vinegar
1 cup cubed mozzarella, optional
1. Toast the pine nuts in a small, dry skillet over medium heat, shaking the pan occasionally, until lightly browned. Remove from the pan.
2. TurnRead More »from Mark Bittman: Wheat Berry Salad with Zucchini and Mozzarella