Barley is a lovely grain. We usually think of barley in barley soups, but barley is a grain that can be incorporated in many other dishes or can even be eaten as side dish or in salads. Barley has a lovely nutlike flavor and a chewy consistency. There are many different types of barley, and the one I used is hulled barley, which is a whole grain. Pearl barley, which is very common, is not a whole grain; it has been polished to remove some or all of the outer bran layer along with the hull. Hulled barley is nutritious; it’s a good source of B-vitamins, minerals and fiber. However, it does contain gluten. It takes a while to cook, as it’s a whole grain, but you can (and I recommend) reduce cooking time by soaking the grains overnight in water (and do not use the soaking water). You can also cook the barley in a pressure cooker if you have one.
At school, we made homemade kimchi and I brought some back home. It’s made with daikon, carrots, pears and spices. This is what I used in my barley salad. Kimchi is fermented and is great for the intestinal flora and for the digestive system. You could also use store bought kimchi or sauerkraut if you prefer. If you don’t like sour foods, you can also just omit this step and use shredded carrots.
This is a picture of the homemade kimchi (the juice is at the bottom):
I made a delicious miso ginger dressing to go with it. It was very delicious. The flavors go very well with this salad. Miso is another types of food that is fermented and that support digestive and immune health.
If you like, garnish the salad with gomasio and dulse granules for a boost of minerals and flavors.
This barley salad is vegan and can be soy-free if using chickpea miso.
- 1 cup barley, rinsed (or soaked overnight, rinsed and drained)
- 2 cups water
- 1 celery stalk, sliced
- 2 scallions, sliced
- Homemade kimchi (or sauerkraut or shredded carrots)
- Gomashio, to garnish
- Dulse granues, to garnish
- ¼ cup orange jucie
- ¼ cup water
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
- 1 tbsp miso
- 1” ginger
- 1 small clove garlic
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Pinch cayenne
- Cook the barley in water in a small pot or in a pressure cooker until grains are tender. If the grains have not been soaked and/or are not cooked in a pressure cooker, it can take up to an hour to cook. Set aside and allow to cool.
- Make the dressing by combining all ingredients into a small bowl or a blender, and whisk or blend until smooth. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine the barley, the kimchi (or shredded carrots), celery, and scallions. Add the dressing and toss to combine.
- Plate and garnish with gomashio and/or dulse granules if you like.
-If you don't have kimchi or fermented foods, simply add shredded carrots.