recipe, salad, side dish, spring, summer, year-round

Ancient Grain Salad with Herbs

I consider myself quite a healthy person. Sure, I enjoy baking gut-tightening treats but I also like to think I’m pretty balanced when it comes to what I put between my choppers. But the clouds part ways and the sun shines down when I eat a healthy dish that tastes absolutely amazing.

Garlicy, creamy, chewy, flavourful, and above all delicious. These are the words that describe this Fareek and Lentil salad mixed with spinach and herbs and topped with a lemony garlic yogurt dressing.

This salad will be a hit even among the “I refuse to eat healthy” and the “I treat my body as a temple” eaters. But ultimately this salad is made for those who, like most of us, fall somewhere in between.

Best of all? Make it ahead. Dole it out throughout the week. This would make a great work lunch because it’s flavourful, keeps well, and will keep your blood sugar levels in check right through ’till dinner!  Plus, your colleagues will be looking over your shoulder whispering, “… can I taste?”

Ancient Grain Salad with Herbs

Salad Ingredients:

  • 2 medium onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 cup green lentils
  • 1 cup whole freekeh (or wheat berries, spelt berries, etc.)
  • 1/4 heaping teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 heaping teaspoon allspice
  • 2 cups vegetable stock or water
  • 3/4 cup baby spinach, chiffonade
  • 2 tablespoons parsley, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons mint, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
  • Optional garnishes (pomegranate seeds, toasted and chopped nuts, preserved lemon peel, etc)
    sea salt and freshly ground black pepper 
  • Yogurt sauce (recipe below)


  1. Over medium-high heat melt the butter and add the oil. Sautee the onions, seasoned with salt and pepper, until golden brown (about 20 minutes). Set aside.
  2. Cook the green lentils.  Rinse the lentils.  Place in a pot and cover with salted water.  Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer.  Continue to cook until the lentils are tender, but not mushy (the lentils should have a bit of a bite), about 20-40 minutes (depending on the type of lentil you are using).  Drain and add the lentils to the bowl with the onions.
  3. Cook the freekeh.  Place the stock (or water), freekeh, cinammon, and allspice in a pot, and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and continue cooking until the freekeh is tender, about 30 minutes (cracked freekeh will take less time).  Drain any excess liquid and add the freekeh to the bowl with the lentils and onions.

When cool, add the sorrel and fresh herbs. Mix to combine.  Top with the yogurt sauce.  Sprinkle with garnishes if using.


Yogurt Sauce


  • 1/2 cup yogurt
  • 1 small garlic clove, crushed to a paste
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1-2 tbsp water
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


Mix the yogurt, garlic, water and lemon.  Season with salt and pepper. Allow it to rest in the fridge for an hour or more to ferment slightly.

Recipe adapted from Wild Greens and Sardines