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Herby Freekeh Salad with Grilled Aubergine and Courgette

A Middle-Eastern favourite, freekeh is roasted young green wheat with a lovely, nutty flavour.

Serves 6 Total Time 50 mins (approx)

Ingredients 

Get the ingredients here.

  • 200g wholegrain freekeh
  • 1 large aubergine, cut into chunks
  • 1 large courgette, cut into chunks
  • 2 tbsp olive oil, plus another 2 tbsp for the dressing
  • 10g dill, finely chopped
  • 10g coriander, finely chopped
  • 10g flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 60g walnuts, toasted and roughly chopped
  • 4 banana shallots, sliced into thin rings (for the topping)
  • 1 drizzle vegetable oil
  • 2 tbsp tahini, for the dressing
  • 1 lemon, juiced (for the dressing)
  • 3 tbsp water (for the dressing)
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed

Instructions

1. Place the freekeh and 1.5l of water into a large saucepan and place over a medium heat. Once simmering, cook for 25-30 mins, or until al dente. Drain and allow to steam in a colander once cooked.

2. Meanwhile, place the aubergine and courgette chunks into a large mixing bowl with the olive oil and toss to coat. Thread them onto some metal skewers and place directly over the coals on a hot BBQ. Cook for 2 mins, then turn and repeat until they are beautifully golden and just cooked through. This should take around 8-10 mins in total. Once done, remove and carefully slide the veg off the hot skewers into a mixing bowl.

3. Transfer the cooked freekeh into the bowl too, and add the chopped herbs and walnuts, season and mix well.

4. Use your fingers to separate the banana shallot slices into rings and heat enough oil to coat the bottom of a frying pan to a round 1cm depth. Add the shallots and fry over a medium heat for around 8-10 mins, stirring occasionally so they cook evenly. Once they are a beautiful deep golden-brown colour, use a slotted metal spoon to lift them out onto some kitchen paper and sprinkle with a little pinch of salt.

5. Whisk all the ingredients for the dressing together in a small bowl and season with fresh black pepper. If you like your dressing a little thinner, then add a few more drops of water.

6. Tip the freekeh salad out onto a serving plate and drizzle over a little of the dressing. Top with the crispy shallots and a few more herb leaves. Serve the remaining dressing on the side.

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