Almost Turkish Recipes

Spinach with Soft Wheat Berries (Buğdaylı Ispanak)

I usually cook spinach with white rice. I had bought a big bag of soft wheat berries for another recipe. They are tastier than bulgur, and softer and easier to chew than brown rice. I decided to use them with spinach for a great summer recipe.

1 full cup of pearl onions, or 1 big onion, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, sliced
3 tomatoes, grated or 1 can diced tomato
1 cup cooked soft wheat berries
1 lb / almost 1/2 kilo spinach, chopped
3 tbsp olive oil
1 cup vegetable stock or water (hot)
1/2 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp sugar
black pepper (optional)
red pepper flakes (optional)

-1/3 cup of soft wheat berries will make approximately 1 cup when they're cooked. Boil 1/3 cup soft wheat berries in 3-4 cups of water until berries are soft.
-Heat the oil in a broad pot. Stir onion and garlic until slightly brown.
-Pour in tomatoes and cook for 5-8 minutes.
-Stir in spinach, lemon juice, sugar, salt, pepper(s), and berries.
-Pour vegetable stock.
-Cover and cook on medium for 30-35 minutes.
-You serve it cold or hot. It goes well with fresh bread and yogurt.


  1. Mmmh, that looks very good! How long does it take for the wheat to cook?

  2. beautiful looking dish.
    ur got very wonderful blog over here. all those food so tempting.

  3. Honeybee: it takes half an hour or a little more.

    ISha: thanks!

  4. Anonymous1:51 PM

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  5. I haven't seen any wheat berries before. Should look for them if they're available here in NZ. Nice to know your blog.

  6. Anonymous11:41 PM

    Arfi Binsted,

    I live in Australia and here wheat berries are called Pearl Barley. They may be called the same in NZ.

    hope this helps.


  7. This looks really good and nice photos!

  8. Arfi,
    Nice to see you here, too.
    I'm sure you can find wheat berries in NZ; you may find them in stores that carry bulk or packed organic dry foods. They might be called "soft wheat berries"

  9. Sidika,
    As far as I know pearl barley and soft wheat berries are two different things.