The cafe was very busy today and they loved all my new dishes definitely the flavours of the Middle East going on. Belazu is the suppliers of these amazing products which I will talk you through as we progress. My staff had problems getting their heads around all the different ingredients today, quite frankly they do read like a foreign language. So below you will see Belazu's Beldi preserved lemons they are gorgeous it's difficult to see in the picture below just how tiny they are.
Beldi Preserved Lemons
Then we have smoky Freekeh is durum wheat that is harvested whilst still green and roasted on an open fire it is then rubbed to remove the husk to reveal the aromatic grain. Its easy to cooked pretty much like rice and it has a very nutty, smoked flavour.
Just about to mix my smoky Freekeh Salad Today
This salad that's in the making above went on the counter today and was pretty much sold out by 12.45pm I just can't make them quick enough. It has a chewy, nutty bite to it with the flavours of salty preserved lemons, pungent Zatar and a kick of Belazu's smoky harissa. I wouldn't even attempt to make harissa after tasting their's its absolutely packed with a smoky, delicious, deep chilli flavour. I would serve the salad with a lovely piece of grilled meat, chicken or fish.....or delicious enough on it's own.
4 cups cooked Freekeh
1Cup chopped spring onion
1/2 cup chopped parsley
1/2 cup chopped coriander
1/2 cup chopped mint
3 preserved lemons chopped skin and flesh
1/2 cucumber finely diced
1 small red onion finely chopped
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp harissa
1 tbsp Zatar in oil chopped ( you can purchase this from me of online at Belazu)
4 tbsp red wine vinegar dressing
Cooked Freekeh in lightly salted water for approximately 15 minutes, drain, refresh under cold water until chilled
Add lemon juice, harissa to the red wine dressing, mix well, season if it need more sea salt and pepper
Add all you salad ingredients to a bowl, mix well
Just before serving add the dressing and mix
Always check your seasoning again at this stage. You may find you need more harissa for a bit more of a kick or fresh lemon juice....never be afraid to season to your taste!
Smoky Freekeh Salad
The final salad needs to look quite green and fresh with the heat and smokiness of Belazu's harissa, saltiness of preserved lemons but also the freshness of the lemon juice. I hope you enjoy making this salad as much as your family or guests will enjoy eating it.
I can't recommend Belazu highly enough for these wonderful, authentic Middle Eastern products. They aren't cheap but I think they're worth every penny. I don't have time to make harissa, zhoug paste or chermoulla. I have made them in the past but that's when I had the luxury of a commis chef or two. Gone are those lucky days!
If you're interested I will be running some cookery demonstrations in the cafe sometime in September I'm just trying to put a schedule of events up as we speak.....so watch this space!
Enjoy the rest of your day speak tomorrow.