It can be overwhelming and frustrating to learn that you, or someone you love, can no longer eat gluten. Carol Fenster aims to give you a positive and simple transition with Gluten-Free 101 (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2014). Fenster provides recipes for everyday favorites, tips for mastering gluten-free baking and an extensive product shelf, proving that going gluten-free can be fun and delicious. This whole-grain Sorghum Salad Recipe, excerpted from “Soups & Salads,” will get you one step closer to a balanced diet.
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One serving of this salad puts you closer to your quota of three to five servings of whole grains per day, as recommended by the Whole Grains Council. Soak the sorghum in water overnight or it will take a full hour to cook. For meat eaters, add cooked shrimp or chopped chicken.
Whole-Grain Sorghum Salad
• 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
• 2 tablespoons lemon juice or orange juice
• 2 tablespoons agave nectar
• 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
• 1 small garlic clove, minced
• 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
• 1⁄8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
• 1⁄4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
• 1 cup whole-grain sorghum (soaked in water overnight and drained)
• 2 medium navel oranges or 1 (11-ounce) can mandarin oranges, drained
• 2 cups strawberries, halved (reserve 6 whole strawberries for garnish)
• 3 tablespoons minced shallot or onion
• 2 cups packed baby spinach
• 1⁄2 cup pecan halves
• Salt and freshly ground black pepper
• 1⁄2 cup feta cheese (optional)
1. Make the dressing: Whisk the vinegar, lemon juice, agave nectar, mustard, garlic, salt, pepper, and oil until slightly thickened.
2. Make the salad: In a large pot, bring 6 cups salted water to a boil. Add the sorghum and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sorghum is tender, about 45 minutes. Drain and set aside to cool. (The sorghum can be cooked up to 3 days ahead and refrigerated.)
3. Meanwhile, finely grate the zest of 1 orange into a large serving bowl. Using a sharp knife, remove the peel and white pith from the outside of both oranges. On a cutting board, chop the oranges into bite-size pieces and set aside to stir in just before serving.
4. Add the cooked sorghum to the large bowl and toss with enough of the dressing to thoroughly coat. (Refrigerate leftover dressing for another salad.) Refrigerate for up to 4 hours to let the flavors meld. Then, just before serving, gently stir in the oranges, strawberries, shallots, spinach, and pecans. Taste and add salt and pepper, if desired. Serve, topped with the feta (if using) and the whole strawberries.
350 calories; 7g protein; 19g total fat; 8g fiber; 43g carbohydrates; 11mg cholesterol; 272mg sodium
Cooking Whole Grains
The traditional method of cooking whole grains is to cook them in a covered pan, with an exact ratio of 2 parts water to 1 part grain. However, my method yields a firmer, less mushy cooked grain: For every 1 cup of sorghum or brown rice (or any other grain), measure four times as much water or broth (in this recipe, that equals 6 cups for every 1 cup sorghum) into a large pot. Bring to a boil, add the grain and return to a boil, and cook uncovered until tender (the time will vary depending on the grain). Drain the grains, but leave them in the pot and set aside to steam, covered, for 10 minutes. Then proceed with your recipe.
More Recipes from Gluten-Free 101:
Recipe reprinted with permission from the publisher Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, from Gluten-Free 101: The Essential Beginner's Guide to Easy Gluten-Free Cooking by Carol Fenster. Photographs by Jason Wyche. Copyright 2014. Purchase this book from our store: Gluten-Free 101.