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Millet-Herb Salad with Chickpeas & Cranberries

 

Get ready for a serious taste sensation with my latest recipe. As a gluten-free alternative, I’ve been creating millet-based salads for a while now, experimenting with different combinations of herbs, dressings, beans, nuts, seeds, etc., and I’m absolutely thrilled with the results here.  I was aiming for something tabbouleh-ish but with a little twist. Who knew pumpkin seeds and cranberries would go so well? It tastes like Mediterranean with a splash of Thanksgiving.

However, before I go on and on about how delicious this recipe turned out, I would like you to know how much I love inspiring my readers and clients to step out of their “comfort zones” when it comes to trying new food. Millet, mostly known as an ingredient in bird seed, is a beautiful grain (actually a seed) with tremendous nutritional benefit. If you haven’t tried it yet, I highly recommend you start with this recipe. For those of you who have already discovered this powerhouse food, I’m sure you will thoroughly love this recipe.

 

 

Millet is an excellent source of magnesium, potassium, iron, phosphorous, B vitamins, and fiber, but nutrition isn’t its only virtue. Its mildly nutty flavor and versatility make it a fun ingredient for all kinds of , especially grain-based salads like this one. Like I said earlier, I’ve been experimenting for a while with millet salads, and have come up with several recipes that I’m looking forward to sharing with you in the future. I especially love how well millet holds up to dressing without becoming soggy, which makes millet my main go-to grain for salads. When you’re batch cooking, it’s really nice to know your salad can sit in the fridge for a few days, marinating in all the flavors without every becoming mushy and slushy.

 

 

I tossed the millet with chickpeas, fresh mint, parsley, scallions, cucumbers, pumpkin seeds, dried cranberries and a light vinaigrette with olive oil, white wine vinegar, garlic, and lemon. It’s a beautiful marriage of textures and flavors that I personally love. With a little bit of sweet and crunch, the addition of cranberries and pumpkin seeds finished out the recipe nicely. Although I would recommend sticking with the ingredient list in this recipe as close as possible, just to get the experience of Mediterranean Thanksgiving, feel free to add or substitute as you like. However, make sure you stick with the sweet and crunch!

 

 

Optional substitutions or additions:

  • sub basil for mint
  • sub cilantro for parsley
  • try the combination of basil, cilantro & green onions
  • add other fresh herbs such as oregano & thyme
  • sub lentils or white beans for chickpeas
  • sub dried cherries instead of cranberries
  • sub sunflower seeds, almonds or walnuts for pumpkin seeds

 

Millet-Herb Salad with Chickpeas & Cranberries
 
Author:
Recipe type: Entree
Cuisine: Vegan, Gluten-fee
Ingredients
  • Millet Salad:
  • 1 cup dry millet, soaked 18 hours
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup dried chickpeas, soaked 18 hours or 1 can Eden Organic, pre-soaked
  • 1 medium cucumber, diced small
  • ½ cup finely diced red onion or shallot
  • 3 green onions, diced
  • 2 cups tightly packed mint, finely chopped
  • 1 cup tightly pack parsley, finely chopped
  • ⅓ cup pumpkin seeds
  • 4 oz. organic dried cranberries
  • Himalayan salt to taste
  • Dressing:
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tbsp red or white wine vinegar
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
Instructions
  1. Preparing the Millet & Chickpeas:
  2. Drain and rinse the millet.
  3. Bring 2 cups of water to a boil and add the millet. Reduce heat to medium and cook uncovered for 20 minutes or until water has absorbed. Fluff with a fork and set aside to cool.
  4. Drain and rinse the chickpeas and cook in fresh water until tender, around 30-40 minutes. Set aside to cool.
  5. Make your dressing:
  6. Whisk ingredients together right before tossing with the millet salad.
  7. Assembling the salad:
  8. Add cooled millet and chickpeas to a large bowl with the rest of the ingredients and toss well until the dressing is fully incorporated with the millet.
  9. Salt to taste and add more herbs if you like.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 4-6

 

 

If you’re new to cooking with millet or a seasoned veteran, I’d love to hear from if you give this recipe a whirl. Remember to tag #yogitrition and leave a comment! And as always, if you enjoyed this post and would like more recipes like this, please join me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.

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