Spring Vegetable Pearl Barley Salad Recipe

It’s nearly Summer, so, in the spirit of being healthy and all that jazz, here’s a salad that can be made in a huge batch and transferred to a few days worth of lunches! This recipe has been thrown together by Sophie from Sophie Likes Cake. Read her post to find out more about the charming results of eating asparagus.


Sophie Likes Cake

Delicious Spring Vegetable Pearl Barley Salad

Adapted from Ripe Recipes by Angela Redfern

Makes a rather large platter

2 carrots, chopped into smallish chunks however you fancy

1 large kumara, chopped into smallish chunks

1 tablespoon sumac

1 aubergine, sliced into chunks as well

1 red onion, diced

3 cloves garlic, minced

Splash of oil

A few grinds of salt

1 small bag salad greens

1 bunch asparagus, each spear chopped in half or in thirds

Seeds of 1 pomegranate

1 avocado, diced

1 cup mint leaves, torn or roughly chopped

1 ½ cups pearl barley

7 ½ cups water

2 teaspoons salt

For the dressing:

3 tablespoons pomegranate molasses

Juice of 1 orange

Juice of 1 lemon

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon honey

¼ cup neutral oil

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees on bake. Toss the carrots and kumara in a splash of oil and the sumac then place on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Toss the aubergine slices in oil and place them on the tray too. Give the vegetables a good sprinkling of salt then bake for 30-40 minutes until tender and beginning to go golden at the edges (this will depend on the size of your chunks). Remove from the oven when done and leave to cool.

To cook the barley, place the barley, water and salt in a large sauce pan and bring to the boil. Boil away for 15-20 minutes until the barley is al dente. Strain and leave to cool also (I scatter my barley across a large plate to speed up cooling).

Blanch the asparagus spears in boiling water for two minutes before draining and plunging in cool water to stop them from overcooking. If you are super onto it place the asparagus in the pot of pearl barley two minutes before draining –saves water and on the number of pots!

Sauté the onion and garlic in another small splash of oil until translucent then toss this in with the barley.

Place all the dressing ingredients in a jar and shake to combine.

In a large bowl, toss the barley, roast veges, asparagus, mint and salad greens together with a few splashes of the dressing (you don’t want to drown it). Top with the pomegranate seeds and diced avocado. Serve with the rest of the dressing on the side.