Spring Buckwheat Salad

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Since Elsa was born, I have been proud of the fact that we live in a worn-down one bedroom apartment with her. I suppose it has been a way for me not to feel too grown-up, even though I was the first of my friends to have a kid. “She doesn’t need her own room” has been like a mantra to me. Also, the whole idea of a perfect home gives me the creeps. I have always aimed for an imperfect home (not always to Luise’s liking). One that I can feel relaxed in, stain the sofa with coffee and drop heavy marble boards on the floor (and my toe) without hating myself for it. Come to think of it, it’s quite funny that I have spent most of my career working on decoration magazines; showcasing perfect families in impeccable homes. Or perhaps that is the very reason behind my feelings?

So why am I rambling about this? Well as we mentioned in an earlier post, we have a new family member on his way. So this weekend it was time for us to move to a new, slightly bigger apartment. With shiny floors. And a kids-room for Elsa. I have been struggling with my feelings for this new home, but the expression on Elsa’s face when she saw her new room, made me forget all about my anxiety in a heartbeat. I suddenly even look forward to creating this new home together.

We are not there today though. Our new apartment is getting a layer of paint and while it is drying up, we are staying in our family’s summer house. So we have yet to find out how the light wanders through the rooms and where we can find space to take photos. If there are any good restaurants close. If Elsa will manage to sleep on her own. And how we can renovate the non-functional kitchen on a low budget. I think it’s gonna be great, but I might just need to scratch those shiny floors a bit before we move in.

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Should I move on to the recipe or tell you a little bit about it first? Hmm, let me just quickly sum it up. I don’t have to waste a lot of words on convincing you how mixing grilled asparagus with strawberries and radishes is a hit. It is pretty obvious. We did however try something different to go with the veggies. We often cook buckwheat porridge for breakfast and use buckwheat flour when we bake, but this was our first attempt to use buckwheat groats in a salad. To be honest, it was our second attempt, the first one cooked too long, came out all soft and moist and turned the salad into a sloppy vegetable porridge. One the second attempt we cooked it on low temperature for a short while and then left it to rest for a few minutes more until it was tender but with a bite. We tossed the buckwheat groats in a parsley, lemon and honey dressing and the result exceeded our expectations both in flavor and consistency.

You might have noticed the bread on the photos and wondered “hey, what is going on there?”. Well, the pregnancy have left Luise craving rye bread, so she insisted on having croutons in the salad (first time in GKS history). Instead of the traditional square shaped croutons, she sliced rye bread thinly, put the slices on the grill and then broke them into irregular pieces. They turned out more like thin, delicious rye flakes than anything else. Next time, I think we’ll slab a hint of garlic butter on them before grilling, to make them even crispier and more flavorful.

See you next time, hopefully with a post from our new crib!

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Spring Salad with Buckwheat Groats & Rye Bread Flakes

Just leave out the parmesan if you are vegan and replace the honey with maple syrup.

1 cup / 250 ml whole buckwheat groats
2 cups / 500 ml water
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 large handful fresh flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
juice from 1/2 lemon, or more to taste + more for the asparagus
1 drizzle cold-pressed olive oil or rapeseed oil + more for the asparagus
1 tbsp honey, preferable unheated
1 bunch asparagus (approx. 15 spears)
4 thin slices wholegrain sourdough rye bread
1 bunch radishes (approx. 15), sliced
1 lb. / 500 g strawberries, sliced
10 slices of shaved parmesan cheese
1 small handful pea sprouts

Rinse the buckwheat in a sieve with hot water, then rinse well in cold water. Bring the water to boil in a saucepan, then add the rinsed buckwheat. Let gently simmer on low heat for 7-10 minutes. Add sea salt. Remove from heat and let sit for another 7-10 minutes or until tender. Drain any excess water and let slightly cool. Finely chop the parsley and add to the buckwheat together with lemon, oil and honey. Season to taste.
Heat a grill or a large griddle pan and dry grill the asparagus spears on both sides until nicely marked and soft. Toast the rye bread slices on both sides on the grill (or griddle pan) until nicely marked and slightly crispy. Slice the asparagus spears into bite size pieces and drizzle generously with lemon juice and oil. Break the crispy bread into smaller pieces. Thinly slice radishes and strawberries. Place the parsley marinated buckwheat in a serving bowl, arrange asparagus, radishes and strawberries over and scatter with crispy rye bread, shaved parmesan and pea sprouts.

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