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Monday, February 1, 2010

What to do with Barley

I have developed tendonitis (from carrying the baby!) and therefore, typing is a bit of a challenge... so please forgive the short post....

It's officially February and I am still clinging to the hope of losing some weight this winter. I am trying to watch what I eat (with the acknowledgement that I will be falling off the wagon this Superbowl weekend) and I have also started to exercise again. But it's the middle of winter afterall and the days are so dreary. It seems far easier to cuddle up on the sofa with a good book, and consume copious amounts of junk food than to go for a run. But that's just me...

In my search for something healthy and easy, I saw a bean salad at the deli section of the supermarket and thought perhaps this would hit the spot.

Enter barley. It's a grain and a great source of fibre. Therefore, you can feel full without gorging on naughty things like french fries, hamburgers and chocolate or feel like a rabbit by eating a rather large bowl of lettuce.

Wonder what to do with barley?

A couple of things I like to do are:

1. Add cooked barley to beef stew or to soups
2. Substitute arborio rice as a "risotto"
3. Barley water (Seems weird but bear with me - it's a British drink where you mix boiled barley water with sugar and lemon juice. It's actually very delicious.)
4. Add into a salad - delicious with chicken and dried cranberries or this barley and beans salad.

Barley & Bean Salad

1 c pearled barley
1 can navy beans

2 tbsp olive oil
1/4c lemon juice
1 c petit pois (sweet green peas)
1 small carrot, peeled and diced into small cubes
1 tsp honey
1 tsp dill
1 tsp parsley

salt & pepper
optional: crumbled goat cheese

1. Rinse barley in cold water until clear. Cook barley according to package directions (approximately 20-25 minutes in 4 c of water.)
2. Rinse beans in cold water and set aside. Meanwhile mix olive oil, lemon juice, honey, dill and parsley together.
3. Once barley is tender, drain and add to bean mixture.
4. Serve warm topped with crumbled goat cheese.


Vinosister said...

I LOVE barley! I made a turkey soup after xmas but only because that's the only thing I ever use barley in. I'm going to start using it more often now, thanks!

J.C. said...

I was told to eat barley as it's low in glycaemic index in comparison to rice. Till now I am still have not given it a try. Proabably should try out your suggested menu.

Btw, barley lime water (i.e. barley boiled with sugar plus a squeeze of lime) is a very popular drink in Malaysia! You can get it at any Chinese coffee shop.

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