Such a wintery dish – beautiful Barley mixed with dried fruit and nuts, with a yoghurt-tahini and mint dressing, making a perfect salad, or an accompaniment for roasted winter vegetables. My house is a cold old house in the depths of winter, and there is nothing better than having vegetables roasting and barley bubbling on a cold evening. It fogs the windows and makes us and the kitchen toasty warm.
This Barley almost-pilaf-style dish is wonderful served with all sorts of roasted winter vegetables – Pumpkin, Jerusalem Artichokes, Fennel, Parsnips, Carrots etc. But don’t let that limit you. The Barley makes an excellent salad or side dish with the dressing just drizzled over the top.
Are you looking for similar recipes? Try Barley and Lentils with Mushrooms, Olive, Pistachio and Pomegranate Salad, Winter Roast Vegetables with Chickpeas, Barley and Red Kidney Beans, Parsley and Barley Salad, and Mediterranean Barley with Crispy Tofu.
Toasted Pearl Barley with Pistachios and Raisins
serves 5 – 7, depending how you use it
2 tbsp olive oil
400g pearl barley
2 litres vegetable stock or water
1 Tblspn fennel seeds, toasted
1 Tblspn sesame seeds, toasted
1 tspn cumin seeds, toasted
2 small lemons, juice and zest
½ bunch each mint and parsley, chopped
5 Tblspn pistachios, toasted and roughly chopped
5 Tblspn raisins or sultanas
extra virgin olive oil
sea salt and black pepper
1 tspn tahini
100 g yoghurt
pinch of dried mint
fresh chilli or harissa, to taste
Winter vegetables of your choice – Pumpkin, Jerusalem Artichokes, Fennel, Parsnips, Carrots etc.
If you are roasting vegetables, prepare them and pop them into a hot oven.
Begin to cook the barley about 40 mins before the vegetables are ready. Heat a heavy-based pan and toast the barley, shaking constantly, until golden and a wonderful aroma arises.
Add the stock to the barley, bring to the boil and simmer for 25 – 35 mins or until the barley is al dente.
Add the rest of the ingredients with a drizzle of olive oil. Season to taste.
While the barley and vegetables are cooking, make the dressing. Mix the tahini and mint into the yoghurt. For a little heat, add some fresh chilli or harissa, to taste.
Serve the barley with the tahini yoghurt and roasted winter vegetables of your choice. Or, without the vegetables, serve in a beautiful bowl with some dressing drizzled over the top and the rest served separately. Delicious.