Middle Eastern Millet Salad-in-a-Jar

Layer your lunch with this vegetarian and gluten-free meal-in-a-jar. We love the versatility of millet - it can be porridge, popped or fluffy (as it is in this recipe). To save time, cook batches of millet, let cool, then store in freezer bags for up to 1 month.
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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 1 hr
  • Active: 30 min
  • Yield: 4 servings (about 1 cup millet each)
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1 cup millet, rinsed

Kosher salt

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/3 cup Greek yogurt

1/3 cup hummus

Juice of 1/2 lemon plus the remaining half, quartered

A few dashes of hot sauce

1 large ripe tomato, finely chopped

1 small green bell pepper, seeded and finely chopped

1/2 cup fresh parsley leaves, finely chopped

1/2 cup pickled beets, diced

8 stuffed grape leaves, sliced into coins

2 Kirby cucumbers, diced

1 tablespoon za'atar spice blend (see Cook's Note)

1/2 cup french-fried onions


Special equipment:
Four 16-ounce wide-mouthed glass jars with lids
  1. Make the millet: Bring 2 1/4 cups water to a boil over medium-high heat in a medium saucepan. Add the millet and 1 teaspoon salt. Stir, cover and reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook the millet until it's tender and all the water has been absorbed, about 20 minutes. Remove it from the heat and let sit, covered, for 15 minutes. Add the oil, and fluff the millet with a fork. Serve warm or at room temperature. (The millet can be made up to 2 days ahead and reheated in the microwave.)
  2. Make the yogurt-hummus sauce: Whisk together the yogurt, hummus, lemon juice, 1 tablespoon water, 1/4 teaspoon salt and hot sauce in a small bowl.
  3. Make the tomato-pepper salad: Stir together the tomatoes, peppers, parsley and a pinch of salt in another small bowl.
  4. Assemble the salad: Using four 16-ounce wide-mouthed glass jars with lids, evenly divide the beets among the jars, then add the following in separate layers: the millet (press it down a little to make room), grape leaves, tomato-pepper salad, cucumbers and yogurt-hummus sauce. Top each with a sprinkling of za'atar. Pack the french-fried onions (about 2 tablespoons per salad) and the lemon wedge in separate small containers for transporting.
  5. Just before serving, transfer the jarred ingredients to a large bowl, add the onions and a squeeze of lemon juice and toss.

Cook’s Note

You can find za'atar (a pungent Middle Eastern spice blend of thyme, marjoram, sumac and sesame seeds) in specialty stores or even in your neighborhood market-it's like magic dust!

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