It's a relatively low-profile grain on the nutrition scene but Freekeh packs a powerful punch in terms of nutritional value, taste and texture.
At GRAM, it's our mission to help you live a healthy, sustainable life. So read on to discover more about fine, freaky freekeh.
What is it?
Freekeh traces its ancient roots back to the cradle of farming, the Levant. First mentioned in a 13th century Baghdad cookbook, it's long been a staple for communities in that region.
Like quinoa, it's bursting with protein and fibre. On first look, cracked freekeh looks similar to bulgur wheat.
To make freekah, green durum wheat is roasted and rubbed to create a unique, slightly smoky flavour. The difference is in that integral roasting process that brings out freekeh's flavour.
Texture & taste
If you’re looking for a subtle rice substitute or a flavour that hides behind the rest of a meal, you might want to look elsewhere. The grain keeps its texture well but brings heft and flavour to a dish thanks to its smoky undertones.
How to use it
Freekeh goes great in salads, alongside roasted vegetables, or as a substitute for rice for those who want a deeper flavour. It's natural fit in Lebanese and middle eastern dishes and an interesting substitute for couscous in African-style dishes. In winter months, add freekeh to soups and stews. Freekeh is a great swap for quinoa if you're not following a gluten-free diet.
Freekeh cooks similar to rice but in half the time:
- Add 2.5 cups of water to every 1 cup of cracked freekeh. Add a pinch of salt.
- Bring to the boil then reduce to a simmer, cover, and let cook for 18 to 20 minutes until most of the water is absorbed.
- Remove from heat and let sit for another 10 minutes.
Like most grains, freekeh, is best stored in an airtight container in a cool, dry place for up to 12 months.