Emmer “Kedgeree”

Emmer “Kedgeree”

by Jenny Chandler

This is a very loose use of the name kedgeree - essentially we’re talking grain, smoked fish and curry flavours. The emmer gives a great texture and a more substantial, filling quality than rice. Using smoked trout adds a bit of extra richness and since it requires no cooking, dinner will be on the table even quicker.

Prepare a double quantity of the emmer and leek base here - it’s fabulous added to soups, or served with roasted veg as a warm winter salad. You can refrigerate for a couple of days and warm through when required.

An ancestor of durum wheat, emmer was among the first cereals cultivated in the Fertile Crescent. It has a deliciously nutty flavour and can be eaten as a whole grain (also known farro medio) or ground into flour. Our emmer grains are also available at Holland & Barrett.

Serves 4


  • 250g Wholegrain Emmer ( soaked in cold water for a couple of hours if you remember - otherwise soaked in boiling water whilst you prep and cook your leeks)
  • 2 Leek, sliced finely ( including the paler green section)
  • 25g Butter/ 2 tbsp Olive or Rapeseed Oil, or a mixture of both
  • 100ml White Wine or Vermouth
  • 1 Bouquet Garni ( bay, celery, thyme, parsley - tied in a bundle)
  • Big pinch of Salt
  • 10g Butter or 1 tbsp Olive or Rapeseed Oil
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, crushed
  • 2 Cardamom Pods, cracked open to reveal the seeds
  • ½ tsp Ground Turmeric
  • 1 heaped tsp Curry Powder
  • 100ml Double Cream
  • 150g Smoked Trout Fillet
  • About 20 Grapes, halved and seeds removed
  • Handful of Coriander or Parsley, roughly chopped
  • 4 eggs, boiled for 6 minutes, shelled and halved
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste


  1. Wash the sliced leeks really thoroughly in a colander, they can be gritty.
  2. Heat up the butter, or oil, in a large saucepan, add the leeks and a good pinch of salt. Cook over a low heat, for about 10 minutes, until soft.
  3. Add the drained emmer wheat and stir around to absorb some of the leek-y juices. Tip in the wine or vermouth, add the bouquet garni , salt and cover with water by a couple of centimetres. Bring up to the boil, cover and bubble gently until the grains of wheat are just tender, retaining a wonderful nutty bite. Do top up the water if necessary ( although you want most of it to be absorbed by the time the grain is cooked). Now your grain is ready you can eat it as a side dish, as a warm salad base or continue with the “kedgeree”.
  4. In a separate pan, heat up the butter and fry the garlic and ginger gently until you are hit by the aromas, toss in the spices and let them bloom for a few seconds, before adding the cream to stop anything from burning. Set aside.
  5. Once you are ready to serve, add the emmer to the curried cream and heat it through over a medium heat. Taste and adjust the seasoning , remembering that the trout may be quite salty.
  6. Serve with the smoked trout flaked over the top, a sprinkling of fresh herbs, the grapes, boiled egg and a really generous flurry of freshly ground black pepper.

Jenny Chandler
Jenny Chandler


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