Someone had to do some cooking for this recipe, but you don't.
Head to a salad bar that's well stocked with whole grains. Cooked wheat berries will be there; chewy and protein-packed, they provide the terrain for all kinds of add-ins. Here, we went with scallions and roasted pumpkin seeds for crunch; pomegranate arils (seeds) and roasted red peppers for color; pomegranate molasses for a tangy sweetness; and an herbed goat cheese for texture and flavor.
Because it just seemed to work, I tossed in a bit of leftover Chinese food: thin slices of roast pork, to be specific, although rotisserie chicken or strips of roast turkey breast or cooked shrimp would do.
When you want to riff on this salad again, go the less-expensive route and cook the wheat berries yourself. They'll keep in the freezer for up to a month.
Serve with Belgian endive leaves for scooping.
ADD-IN WHEAT BERRY SALAD
Makes 2 servings
2 or 3 scallions
2 or 3 store-bought roasted red peppers
Leaves from 4 stems mint
1/2 cup roasted salted or unsalted pumpkin seeds
1/4 to 1/3 cup pomegranate seeds
2 cups cooked wheat berries (see headnote)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons pomegranate molasses (may substitute fig vinegar)
Kosher salt (optional)
1 ounce soft herbed goat cheese
4 to 6 ounces thinly sliced Chinese roast pork (may substitute roast turkey)
Trim the scallions, then cut both the white and green parts on the diagonal into 1/4-inch pieces.
Combine those ingredients in a mixing bowl along with the roasted pumpkin seeds, pomegranate seeds, wheat berries, oil and pomegranate molasses; toss lightly to incorporate. If you don't plan to add meat, you might want to season the mixture at this point with salt to taste.
Transfer the salad to a serving platter. Distribute pinches of the goat cheese evenly over the salad, then arrange the roast pork on top. Serve at room temperature.
Nutrition per serving (without the roast pork): 660 calories, 19 g protein, 99 g carbohydrates, 21 g fat, 5 g saturated fat, 10 mg cholesterol, 400 mg sodium, 13 g dietary fiber, 13 g sugar.
Based on a recipe from "Share: The Cookbook That Celebrates Our Common Humanity," by Women for Women International, Kyle, 2013.