Freekeh Pilau with Spicy Vegetables


  • 2 cups freekeh
  • 2 brown onions, cut in pieces
  • 3 cinnamon sticks
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 6 cardamom pods
  • 4-6 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 red onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp baharat
  • ½ cup almonds
  • ½ cup pine nuts
  • Salt
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • Optional - Harissa to your taste
  • 2 medium zucchini
  • 1 eggplant, diced
  • 2 capsicum (1 red, 1 green)
  • 3 tablespoons chopped parsley or baby rocket
  • 1 lemon, quartered


  1. Heat the oven to 170C fan, gas 5. Put the zucchine, eggplant, brown onions and capsicum in a bowl. Add the harissa paste and about half the olive oil then mix well to coat the vegetables with oil and seasoning. Put onto 1 or 2 lined baking trays and roast until tender, about 35 minutes.
  2. Now wash the freekeh and remove any burnt grains or stones
  3. Heat about 2 tbspns of the olive oil in a large saucepan and add the red onion. Fry until beginning to soften.
  4. Stir in the freekeh
  5. Add the baharat and 1 teaspoon of salt and stir through
  6. Add the hot vegetable stock and bring to the boil. Lower the heat, cover and simmer for 10 minutes, a little more if you prefer your freekeh softer.
  7. In a large frying pan, heat the remaining olive oil over medium heat, add the almonds and cook until lightly toasted
  8. Remove from the pan and repeat with the pine nuts
  9. Spoon the freekeh onto a large serving plate. Place the roasted vegetables on top, top with chopped parsley and lemon pieces and scatter with the nuts,
  10. Please feel free to substitute vegetables in season as you prefer - this is lovely with parsnips and carrots in winter! Or top it with spinach or rocket gently sauted with garlic! This recipe can be prepared in advance and re-heated for serving.

Products used in this Recipe