Egyptian Barley Salad w/ Pomegranate Vinegrette

1-1/2 cups pearl barley (do not substitute hulled barley or hull-less barley)

  • Salt and pepper

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more for serving

  • 2-1/2 tablespoons pomegranate molasses

  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

  • 1 tablespoon sugar

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro (parsley may be substituted)

  • 1/2 cup golden raisins

  • 1/2 cup unsalted shelled pistachios or walnuts, chopped coarsely

  • 4 oz feta cheese, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

  • 1/2 cup scallions, green parts only, thinly sliced (you'll need 4 to 6 scallions)

  • 1/2 cup pomegranate seeds

 

 

  1. Bring 4 quarts water to boil in a large pot or Dutch oven. Add barley and 1 tablespoon salt, return to boil, and cook until tender, about 45 minutes, or according to package instructions. Drain barley, spread onto rimmed baking sheet, and let cool completely, about 15 minutes.

  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the oil, pomegranate molasses, lemon juice, sugar, cinnamon, cumin, and 1/4 teaspoon salt.

  3. Add the barley, cilantro, raisins, and pistachios (or walnuts) and gently toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Spread barley salad evenly on serving platter and arrange feta, scallions, and pomegranate seeds in separate diagonal rows on top. Drizzle with extra oil and serve.

  4. Make Ahead: The cooked barley and vinaigrette can be refrigerated separately for up to 3 days. To serve, bring barley and vinaigrette to room temperature, whisk vinaigrette to recombine, and continue with step 3, seasoning to taste as necessary. Dressed salad can be held up to 2 hours at room temperature before serving.​