Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Pearl Barley Salad with Leek, Mushroom & Carrot

1 cup uncooked pearl barely
3 cups water ( to cook pearl barely)
1 leek (whites & greens)
2 cups crimini mushrooms 
1/4 cup carrots (diced)
1 garlic clove
1/4 teaspoon chili flakes
pinch of salt
Fresh crack pepper 
Fresh squeezed lemon juice

First wash the pearl barley, add it into a pot along with 3 cups of water, bring to a boil and allow it to simmer on low for about 45 minutes or until tender.

In the mean time waiting for the pearl barely to cook, halve the stalk of leek and slice it into 1/16 inch thick pieces, wash the mushrooms and slice them, and dice about half a small carrot (about 1/4 cups).

Preheat a saute pan on medium, add in 2 tablespoons of olive oil (this will be all the oil you will use in the whole recipe, so don't skimp of it, for it may lead to dry salad). When the pan is nice and hot, add in your leeks, mushrooms, garlic and chili flakes, saute and stir for about 1 minute, then add in your diced carrots. Stir for another 30 secs until the leeks are semi wilted and the mushrooms are letting out moisture, but carrots are still nice and crisp. Now turn off the heat and transfer mixture into a bowl and allow it to cool down.

By this time, the pearl barely is probably still cooking, give it a check to see if it is almost done. 

When the pearl barley is done cooking and is to your preferred consistency, drain it and add it into a large bowl, then add the leek,mushroom and carrot mixture. Mix everything together, I put some fresh cracked pepper in mines, and half a juice of a lemon, but this is totally up to your palate.

Serve this salad warm or cold...either way its great for summer, spring or fall.

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