Apple and Manchego Salad with Wheatberries

January  9, 2011
4 Ratings
  • Serves 4 - 6 as a side dish, 3 or 4 as a light lunch
Author Notes

We've been enjoying the apple and manchego salad at Jose Andres' Jaleo restaurants in DC for years. This was inspired by that combo of the apple, cheese and a vinaigrette. The beauty of the salad is that the peeled apple and Manchego are hard to distinguish, so you get a surprise in each bite. I learned how to cook wheatberries properly from Lorna Sass' Whole Grains - soak, simmer then steam. They come out chewy and tender this way. - healthierkitchen —healthierkitchen

Test Kitchen Notes

Healthierkitchen's salad has enough character to stand alone as an entrée but also has no qualms about holding its own next to a big piece of meat. I should know. I ate it for lunch solo, and again at dinner with a grilled pork chop. Wheatberries give it an overall nutty, chewy mouthfeel while the apples and Manchego alternate complementary crispy-sweet and softer, salty bites. The dressing doesn’t overpower the salad’s elements, but rather melds into a balanced background. —cheese1227

What You'll Need
  • 1 cup wheatberries
  • 3 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons whole grain mustard
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon Spanish smoked paprika (pimenton de la Vera)
  • couple of pinches salt, plus more to taste
  • couple of grinds black pepper, plus more to taste
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/3 cup diced red onion
  • 1 - 1 1/2 tart apples. Granny Smith are fine, but Suncrisp would be stellar
  • 1/3 to 1/2 pounds Manchego cheese
  • 2 -3 ounces arugula
  • 1/3 cup dried tart cherries, roughly chopped if large
  1. Soak the wheatberries overnight in water to cover by a couple of inches. When you're ready to cook them, drain and place in a medium to large saucepan with three cups of water. Bring to a boil and then simmer for anywhere from 30 to 45 minutes. Begin checking them at 30 minutes - you want to see the endosperm appear at one end and they should be a little chewy but not tough. Drain the wheatberries and then immediately place back into the hot pan and cover and let steam off the heat for another ten minutes. Transfer cooked wheatberries into a medium sized bowl.
  2. In a small bowl, add the ingredients from the vinegar through the salt and pepper and whisk to combine. Then stream in the olive oil while whisking.
  3. Add the red onion into the vinaigrette and stir a little so that the onions are submerged.
  4. Peel, core and dice the apple and add to the wheatberries.
  5. Dice up the Manchego cheese and add that to the bowl as well.
  6. Pour the vinaigrette over the wheatberry/apple/Manchego mix in the bowl and stir to coat all the ingredients. Check for salt and pepper.
  7. Either individually plate or serve over bed of arugula. Garnish with the dried cherries.

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