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Summer salad with freekeh

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    I was a vegetarian for over 30 years and so was always looking for new ideas with interesting grains. This recipe combines a number of my favourite ingredients – peas, pomegranate and red onion – and is the epitome of the taste of summer.

    Serves: 12
    Preparation: 15-20 minutes
    Cooking: 1 hour

    Ingredients

    ● 3 red onions, finely sliced
    into rings
    ● 30g caster sugar
    ● Sea salt and black pepper
    ● 125ml balsamic vinegar, plus extra for drizzling
    ● 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
    ● 400g packet of freekeh
    ● 2 bunches asparagus, trimmed
    ● 160g peas
    ● ½ bunch coriander roughly chopped
    ● 200g feta cheese, crumbled

    Method

    ● Preheat the oven to 180°C.

    ● Place the onion on a baking tray and sprinkle with the sugar, salt and pepper.

    ● Pour over the balsamic vinegar and drizzle with the olive oil. Roast for about 30 minutes, then toss and continue roasting until caramelised and golden, about 1 hour.

    ● While the onion is cooking, rinse the freekeh. Place in a saucepan and cover generously with water. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat to low, then simmer for 20–30 minutes, or until the freekeh is tender but still firm.

    ● Rinse and drain thoroughly. Place in a salad bowl.

    ● Blanch the asparagus in boiling salted water for about 2 minutes, and then refresh immediately in cold water. Drain and cut into 2cm pieces.

    ● Cook the peas in boiling salted water for 1 minute, then refresh.

    ● Toss the caramelised onion with the cooking juices through the freekeh.

    ● Add the asparagus, peas, coriander and feta. Season to taste with salt and pepper and, if necessary, extra olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Serve at room temperature.

    Method
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