Get your freekeh on–the new supergrain from the Middle East in a post Thanksgiving soup!
There is nothing freaky about freekeh. Freekeh is an ancient grain mentioned in Middle eastern cookbooks as far back as the 13th century. Popular with Lebanese, Egyptians, Iraqis, and Palestinians, Freekeh is actually wheat that has been harvested while still young and green, then sun dried and rubbed together to ensure uniform flavor, texture, and color. As a matter of fact the word freekeh is derived from the Arabic word “farik” which means rubbed together. I consider freekeh to be an untapped superfood with superior nutritional value. Just a ¼ cup of dried freekeh has 21 grams of fiber! So, not only is this grain low on the glycemic index, but it also has a respectable amount of protein, iron, and potassium. Make sure you rinse freekeh before using to remove any bitterness. The most popular treatment for this grain is in soups because freekeh lends a unique nutty flavor and hearty texture. This particular soup recipe is a hit with my family after Thanksgiving, when the weather is cold, I’m squeezed for time, and the leftover turkey is calling my name. You can however eliminate the turkey and sub veggie broth for chicken for a vegetarian option–which would make it a great post holiday detox! Because I use ready made chicken stock for this recipe, I try to add extra flavor with aromatic herbs, onions, and garlic. The finishing touch of lemon juice is optional, but is quite popular in the Middle East and adds another fresh surprising flavor. You can make this soup anytime of year, and use any kind of meat or beans instead of the turkey for extra protein. Hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving, and enjoy your leftovers!