green plum + cucumber + wheat berry salad

Every day of my life here in Greece I feel like I am discovering a whole new world, eyes wide open, I live each day in search of inspiration from my surroundings. It seems like every week something new is coming into season which leaves me in a continual state of discovery. These discoveries combined with the limited foods available at our village grocers have driven my creativity in a whole new direction. Simple, seasonal fare is a continual theme in our kitchen and this week’s subject of seasonal discovery are the small green plums that have just come into season here on the island.

green plum + cucumber + wheat berry salad green plum + cucumber + wheat berry salad

A few days ago, I started seeing women carrying bags full of these small green plums, destined to become jam. But after tasting one of the plums, I decided to do something less traditional with them. Sour when completely green, as the plums ripen to a pale yellow-green they take on a sweetness that reminds me of green grapes. Gently sweet with a satisfying crunch, I knew that these green plums would be perfect in a salad. Combined with cucumber, which is a daily staple for us, fresh Greek basil and mint from our little garden and wheat berries that have been tossed in a so simple, but so delicious lemon tahini dressing, this salad is the type of meal that I could eat every day.

green plum + cucumber + wheat berry salad

As I was eating this green plum + cucumber + wheat berry salad I found myself completely immersed and focused on each ingredient. The chewy and earthy wheat berries, the creamy  and bright lemon tahini dressing, the crisp cucumbers complimented by the gently sweet plums, the brightness of the herbs fresh from our garden – each element was amazing on its own and in combination with the rest. As a recipe developer, my mind is always analyzing the meals I eat, whether they were made by my own hands or by someone else, it is something that I just cannot turn off. While my mind processed this salad and each of its ingredients, I wondered if I could have done anything differently, added anything else, etc. But by the end of my bowl I was thoroughly convinced that nothing needed to change with this salad.

green plum + cucumber + wheat berry salad

This element of simplicity is becoming a common thread in my recipe development. When the ingredients are at their peak of flavor, its a matter of not over-complicating things in order to thoroughly experience the fullness of each ingredient. Which leads me to this point, my hope in sharing these simple recipes are for them to serve as a source of inspiration for you in your kitchen. If you do not have green plums, substitute green grapes, or even crisp nectarines. If you do not have the herbs I used, try what you can find where you live. In place of the wheat berries you could use quinoa, bulgur, or even couscous – the possibilities are truly endless and hopefully you find inspiration in what is currently in season wherever you may live.

green plum + cucumber + wheat berry salad

If you do happen to come across green plums I would encourage you try them. While they look nothing like the plums most of us are accustomed to eating, they are worth experiencing. And what better way to enjoy these unconventional plums than in this green plum + cucumber + wheat berry salad? And if you do happen to dream up another way to enjoy these plums, I would love to hear about it ;)

green plum + cucumber + wheat berry salad Print
clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
green plum + cucumber + wheat berry salad


  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 2 large servings or 4 small servings 1x




  • 3 cups cooked & cooled wheat berries (quinoa, bulgur, or couscous would work as well)
  • 2 cups, pitted & halved green plums
  • 1 cup sliced seedless cucumber
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • pinch of salt
  • pinch of fresh cracked pepper
  • small handful fresh basil
  • small handful fresh mint


  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp honey ( substitute maple syrup or agave for vegan option )
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 tbsp water, or more as needed
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • purslane for garnish ( optional )


  1. Combine the prepared plums & cucumber in a bowl with 2 tbsp olive oil, juice of 1/2 a lemon, pinch of salt & pepper and torn mint & basil leaves. Toss to combine and allow to marinate while you prepare the dressing.
  2. Combine tahini, olive oil, honey, lemon juice and water with a pinch of salt & pepper in a medium bowl and whisk to blend, adding a small bit of water as needed to achieve a smooth but creamy dressing consistency.
  3. Reserve a bit of the dressing in a small bowl for serving and toss the rest of the dressing with the wheat berries.
  4. To serve, fill bowls with prepared wheat berries, top with marinated plum & cucumber salad and garnish with fresh purslane or other seasonal green – add more dressing over the top as desired
  • Prep Time: 0 hours
  • Cook Time: 0 hours
{ 15 comments… add one }
  • Michelle May 30, 2018, 6:26 am

    Hello Lovely! Once again you impress me with your recipe ingenuity! This is gorgeous with the green and gray. The recipe sounds really delicious! I love the story behind how you discovered them and can you imagine this becoming a new trend in Greece!? How amazing would that be if they didn’t make them into glykia anymore but this gorgeous wheat berry salad with tahini! Who doesn’t love mint! Your photos are gorgeous as always!! Wow!!

    • bella | ful-filled May 30, 2018, 4:04 pm

      Oh you are too sweet! haha! I showed the recipe to a friend of our’s here and she said one word to me “genius” – just like that in English! LOL! It was hilarious! But yes, it would be so neat if they saw these plums in a new light because of this recipe! Thank you so much!

  • Gerlinde May 30, 2018, 10:38 am

    I love using wheat berries in my salad and your dressing looks great. I have to try it.

    • bella | ful-filled May 30, 2018, 4:06 pm

      Yay! We are on a wheat berry kick right now, we just cannot get enough of them! And the dressing is so damn good! Hope you enjoy it as much as we do!

  • Timothy Pakron May 30, 2018, 10:40 am

    This looks so beautiful and delicious bb! I’m obsessed with ume plums so I’m sure I’d love this. MISS YOU!

    • bella | ful-filled May 30, 2018, 4:06 pm

      Awww thank you so much Timmy! I know you would absolutely love this salad! Miss you so much!

  • Marilena May 30, 2018, 1:32 pm

    The salad looks lovely…. These must be κορομηλα, right Bella? It is the right time of the year…

    • bella | ful-filled May 30, 2018, 4:18 pm

      Yes! That is what these are! The villagers here have a different name for them that I cannot remember right now. Some of them eat the crunchy and super sour, but we like to let them turn light yellowish-green and soften a bit!

  • Erin Clarkson May 30, 2018, 3:38 pm

    Yummm this looks so amazing! My friend’s mum grows them at home – she makes some sort of chutney out of them! so good! xx

    • bella | ful-filled May 30, 2018, 4:19 pm

      Oooooh! Chutney sounds amazing! Thank you so much Erin ;)

  • niko May 31, 2018, 5:19 am

    ALL i can say is this, and i quote the now infamous words of mr. panos, ……………………………………………. “GENIUS….GENIUS….GENIUS!!!”

  • niko May 31, 2018, 5:22 am

    we have eaten this, and i variety of this with other versions of fruit now, for about 5 meals or more now since you posted this to IG, and we can not grow tired of it. XILIA EUXARISTO!!!

  • niko May 31, 2018, 5:23 am

    also, lastly, Very Special and Stunning array of photos you made, VERY VERY BEAUTIFUL!!!!!!!!

  • Claudia | The Brick Kitchen June 9, 2018, 4:58 am

    Amazing! Such a fun way to use a new ingredient. Am loving reading about your time in Greece too!!

    • bella | ful-filled June 9, 2018, 8:42 am

      Thank you so much Claudia! It has been quite an adventure so far…so much has changed in our life, but we are in love with living here!

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.