Vegetables are one the best things we can put into our body but they can be seem boring at times. I get it – steamed broccoli and carrots do get old. Enter above salad. The lemon dressing is refreshing while the barley, sweet potatoes and toasted almonds bring an earthy and nutty taste. Finished with some tang from feta cheese for a flavourful bite each time.
Time: 45 minutes
Serves: 2 as a main, 4 as a side.
3 cups leafy greens
2 cups arugula
2 small or 1 large sweet potato
1/4 cup of pearl barley, uncooked
1/2 cup of toasted almonds
1/2 lemon, juiced
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tbsp brown sugar
pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 375°C.
- Wash and cube sweet potatoes. Place in bowl and drizzle with 1 tbsp olive oil and salt & pepper to taste. Spread onto baking sheet.
- Add 3/4 of cup of water and 1/4 cup of barley to a pot (Tip – always cook barley at a 1:3 ratio. 1 cup barley to 3 cups water). Bring barley to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, reduce to a simmer and cover for 30 minutes. Barley is finished when water has been absorbed and the texture is light and fluffy.
- Place sweet potatoes in the oven when you have started to simmer the barley, as these should both be finished at around 30 minutes.
- Roughly chop almonds. Toast in frying pan on medium heat for approximately 3 minutes. Set aside.
- For the dressing, whisk together lemon, olive oil, pepper and brown sugar until sugar is dissolved. Set aside.
- When barley and sweet potatoes are finished and slightly cooled, add to leafy greens/arugula with toasted almonds. Whisk lemon dressing and add to salad. Mix until dressing evenly covers salad.
- Once plated, top when a sprinkling of feta cheese .
* Add meat, fish, poultry or tofu for an extra protein boost.
– Magical Properties –
It’s easy to always reach for the same grain especially when they can be sensationalized in the media as food that cures all (I’m looking to you, quinoa). The reality is that all grains bring something to table. Barley is fantastic for your health in a few ways, one being its soluble fibre content. Simply put, soluble fibre moves slowly through your GI tract due to its gel-like texture. This is particularly beneficial as it helps to keep you full, reduces cholesterol levels, moderates blood sugar levels and helps keep you regular. Barley is also a source of folate, iron and magnesium.