I saw a version of this salad over at Prevention RD about a month ago, and bookmarked it right away. I loved the idea of combining fresh strawberries with fluffed grains. It’s a collaboration I hadn’t really thought of before. This, of course, is why I love food blogs. They provide such a boost of creative inspiration! Oh, and often salvation-inciting pictures too.
The original recipe taken from Newly Wed, Newly Veg uses brown rice, and then Nicole from Prevention RD swapped that out with couscous for an extra quick salad. I didn’t have couscous on hand, so I went with bulgur wheat, the classic grain used for tabbouleh. It too cooks up pretty quickly, and the results of this have made me think I should start testing out other kinds of fruit in my go-to picnic item. (Which reminds me, if strawberries fly out of season before you get to try this, experiment by replacing them with cherries instead.)
I added some mint to the recipe, since my mint crop is currently playing the role of Stimpy while my scrawny-looking basil is unfortunately being forced into the Ren role. I also veganized the grain salad by exchanging the goat cheese for cashews. To bring out the flavor in the nuts, simply toast up raw cashews in a pan over high heat, stirring frequently, until the outer edges become brown.
So there you have it, a unique collaboration of ingredients brought together by a collaboration of bloggers. (Thanks girls for the awesome idea!)
- -2 cups strawberries, hulled and sliced
- -1 tsp sugar
- -3 Tbsp balsamic vinegar, divided
- -1 Tbsp olive oil
- -1 cup bulgur wheat
- -1 cup canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- -1/4 cup raw cashews, dry-roasted, chopped
- -2-3 Tbsp fresh basil, cut into ribbons
- -2 Tbsp mint, cut into ribbons
- -Salt, pinch, to taste
- In a small bowl, combine strawberries, sugar, and 1 tablespoon of vinegar. Set aside for at least 15 minutes.
- Bring bulgur wheat and 2 cups of water to boil. Reduce heat to simmer, and cook for 20 minutes. Remove from heat.
- Whisk together remaining 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar with the olive oil.
- Add strawberries to chickpeas, basil, cashews, and salt — toss well. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar/oil before serving.