This week my CSA provided a bounty of delicious food! My box had bok choy, broccoli raab, leeks, garlic scapes, tomato, cilantro, joi choi and peas! Needless to say I have plenty to make and eat. For lunch I decided to go with a healthy barley salad. Barley is very good for you and is a nice change from the usual pasta salad. I call this confetti salad because it is filled with bright spots of color from all the diced veggies!
You will need:
1 cup barley
1 cup water
2 cups chicken or vegetable broth (low sodium preferred)
1 ear of corn, kernels cut from the cob
1-2 finely diced Jalapeños
1 can black or red beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 tsp cumin
1 tomato, cored and diced
1 cucumber, diced
1 small bell pepper, diced
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
1 lemon (about 2 tbs of juice)
1 lime (around 1 tbs juice)
5 tbs olive oil, divided
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp fresh cracked black pepper
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
First begin by cooking your barley, this will take a good 40-50 minutes. Add the water and broth to a medium sauce pan and bring to a boil. Add the barley. Once boiling, cover and reduce to simmer. Set your timer for 40 minutes and check barley. It should be fluffy and have a little bite but not be hard.
While the barley cooks, you should have enough time to prep and cook the veggies. In a skillet add 1 tbs olive oil. Add the jalapeño and sauté for about 2 minutes. Then add the corn and cumin. Sauté for another few minutes, then cut the heat and let cool.
Next chop up the tomato, cucumber and bell pepper. You could have your sous chef help, but mine always gets distracted.
Add the chopped veggies and drained beans to a large bowl. Once the corn has cooled enough add it as well, stirring to combine.
Once the barley is done add it to a strainer and fluff. Mine had a little extra liquid so the strainer helped. I left it in there for about 5-10 minutes to cool while I made the dressing.
In a small bowl add the juice of a lemon, juice of a lime, 1/4 cup chopped cilantro, 1/4 cup olive oil, salt and pepper. If it seems a little too acidic add a bit more oil. The dressing will tone done once in the salad and the acidity will bring out the bright flavors of the vegetables.
Once the barley has cooled add it to the bowl with the dressing, stirring to combine. Add in the feta cheese and chill over night before serving. This allows the flavors to meld.