barley with carrots and tahini sauce

barley with carrots and tahini sauce

The temperature has been oscillating between unbearable and tolerable, so when it’s tolerable I sneak moments in the kitchen to make meals and start kitchen projects (pickling, fermenting, jam making). On days when it’s especially hot, my thoughts are consumed by things I want to cook/eat. When that happens, I’ll either wait a day or two or just cook late at night. This is one of those late night dishes and with all late night dishes, they need to make for good leftovers.

We recently joined a CSA, so every week we pick up a box at some weird location that magically contains vegetables. Besides all the celery* they’ve been sneaking in, it’s been great. One of our recent shares included carrots, jalapenos, and a big bunch of beautiful parsley, so I whipped up a barley dish that incorporated all three ingredients. As with many dishes I make, it has a Middle Eastern sort of flair, so don’t skip the tahini sauce! It really brings the dish together. Delicious on its own, this also makes a great side. We gobbled it all up with balela and dolmas.

* – Do you have any suggestions to help make celery… uh… not suck?

Barley with Carrots and Tahini Sauce

For the main dish:
1 1/2 cups dried quick cook barley or pearl couscous
1 quart vegetable stock (or water)
2 carrots, chopped into small pieces
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped into small pieces
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1 tablespoon pine nuts
1 teaspoon lemon juice
salt & pepper, to taste
1 tablespoon olive oil
a handful of parsley

Tahini sauce:
1/3 cup tahini
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 teaspoon cumin
salt & pepper, to taste

In a large pot over medium low heat, add barley (or pearl couscous) and vegetable stock. Stir often to make sure the barley doesn’t stick to the pan. Quick cook barley should only take 10-15 minutes, but check the package’s directions to double check the cooking time. A couple minutes before the barley is ready, add the jalapenos and carrots. Stir often.

For the tahini sauce, mix all the ingredients and set aside.

A couple minutes before the barley is ready, toss in the carrots and jalapeno pepper and mix. Once the barley is ready, stir in the coriander, paprika, pine nuts, lemon juice. Add salt and pepper, to taste. Stir in olive oil, parsley, ladle into bowls, drizzle with tahini sauce, and serve.

Serves 4

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  1. Eileen says:

    This sounds like an excellent way to eat barley! Super tasty. RE celery: I might just chop it all up, blanch it, drain it, and freeze it for future application. Or maybe make a huge batch of tomato sauce and freeze that instead. Or we can trade random CSA surplus! Want some kohlrabi? :)

    • rose says:

      Oh, I really like the idea of putting some in a tomato sauce! I’ve been much of the celery for vegetable stock so far. Bring on the kohlrabi!