Monday, March 8, 2010

Barley & Bean Salad

The first thing that struck out to me is how colorful this salad was- Red from the bell peppers, Black from the black beans, Golden brown from the barley, Purple from the red onions, and yellow form the golden corn kernels. I loved the crunchy, crispy texture of the vegetables and the softness from the barley. This tasted wonderful, and it is so healthy! I purchased the barley from the bulk bins at Whole Foods, and it was super easy to whip up. While my barley cooked on the stove top, I prepared the dressing. Dump everything together, let it marry and voila- a delicious and wholesome "salad" that can be eaten as a side dish or use as a main entree. Barley is a high protein and high fiber grain, which is a great substitute for rice. This made a lot, which was great day of and for leftovers.

Here is what uncooked pearl barley looks like

Bean and Barley Salad
1 cup pearl barley
2 cups water
1 cup canned black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup canned kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup canned corn kernels, cooked according to package
1/2 cup red onions, cut into half-inch slices (about half a bunch)
1 red bell pepper, diced

1/3 cup red wine vinegar
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp dried parsley
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
2/3 cup olive oil

1. In a large saucepan, bring 2 cups water to boil. Stir in barley and reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer 30-40 minutes or until tender. If using a rice cooker, increase water to 2 1/2 cups. Allow barley to cool.
2. In a large bowl, combine the cooled barley, black beans, kidney beans, corn, green onions and bell pepper. Mix well.
3. Combine remaining ingredients, whisking in olive oil. Pour over salad and toss well.*
4. Serve at room temperature or chill in fridge for several hours.**

* I only used about 2/3 of the dressing.
** If serving chilled, reserve some of the dressing to pour over salad just before serving.

Source: Originally found on All Recipes, As seen on What's Cooking in Mama Jan's Kitchen


Jen said...

This looks great. How many servings does it make (maybe you listed it and I missed it?).

Sara said...

Hi Jen- sorry for the late response. This made quite a bit. As a side item, it would be 6-8 servings. As a main dish, there would b 3-4 servings.
Thanks for commenting! The salad was terrific.

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