Buckwheat and Gingerbread Salad Recipe

Salade de Sarrasin au Pain d’Epice

Buckwheat has always held a special place in the grain section of my heart, no doubt because of the fabulous galettes de sarrasin we would eat in Brittany when I was growing up.

It is a grain that’s seldom used whole in France, but I like to add it to salads to add more flavor and heft to them. I first made this particular one in the summer, for a delightful picnic on the banks of the Seine, and shared it with my sister and a few friends.

I knew the earthy, nutty taste of buckwheat would do well with a little sweetness and some spices, and I happened to have delicious pain d’épice — the French gingerbread — and a knob of ginger on hand. I also added a variety of finely diced vegetables, to add color and crunch to the softened buckwheat groats.

I have been making it regularly since, and I find it works really well in the fall, too. You can serve it slightly warm then, to make up for the cooler weather.

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Buckwheat and Gingerbread Salad Recipe

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour

Serves 4.

Buckwheat and Gingerbread Salad Recipe


  • 250 grams (1 1/3 cups) buckwheat groats
  • 1 tablespoon tomato jam or other tart preserve
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 2 small carrots, diced finely
  • 1/2 cucumber, diced finely
  • 2 small tomatoes, diced finely
  • 1 thumb-sized knob of fresh ginger, peeled and chopped finely
  • 100 grams (3 1/2 ounces) gingerbread (in France, get pain d'épices), diced
  • 4 handfuls arugula


  1. Cook the buckwheat in salted water according to package instructions. Make sure you cook it al dente, as overcooking will make it mushy. Let cool for 10 minutes.
  2. In a medium salad bowl, whisk together the tomato jam, olive oil, and balsamic vinegar. Add in the buckwheat, carrots, cucumber, tomatoes, ginger, and gingerbread. Toss gently to combine.
  3. Cover and allow to rest in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours, and up to a day.
  4. Serve cool, or slightly warm.

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