Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Mediterranean Eggplant and Barley Salad


FACT: A girl cannot eat Bear Claws for breakfast and even hope to fit into her skinny jeans without slipping a salad into her day every now and then.

Mediterranean Eggplant and Barley Salad
slightly adapted from Smitten Kitchen
Serve 4 as a side dish

For the Salad:
5 Japanese eggplant, cut into 1cm dice (I like to stripe peel them - so there's only a little bit of skin left.)
3 small zucchini, cut into 1cm dice
Extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt Flakes
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup chopped spring onions
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
140g pearl barley
3/4 cup low salt chicken stock
1/2 cup water
125g cherry tomatoes, quartered
Handful of Kalamata olives, pitted and halved
1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion
1/2 cup chopped parsley
1/4 cup chopped mint

For the Dressing:
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 small garlic clove, minced
Pinch of caster sugar
Sea salt flakes
Freshly ground black pepper

Make the Salad:
Preheat the oven to 220 degrees C.

Put the eggplant and zucchini on a large shallow baking tray. Season well with salt and pepper and drizzle with oil. Toss to coat the vegetables  and roast in the oven for about 20 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender and golden. Take them out of the oven and let them cool on the tray.

Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat and add the spring onions, cumin, coriander and smoked paprika and saute for 1 minute. Add the barley and stir to coat the barley in the oil. Cook, stirring for two minutes. Add the chicken stock and water, bring to the boil, reduce to simmer and cover. Cook for about 30-40 minutes, or until the barley is tender and the water has been absorbed. Remove from the heat, leave the lid on for 5 minutes to steam, then tip the barley out onto another baking tray to cool. About 20 minutes.

When the vegetables and barley have cooled to room temperature, put them into a large salad bowl along with the onion, olives, tomatoes, parsley and mint.

Make the Dressing:
Whisk all the ingredients in a small bowl and then dress the salad. Toss the salad and serve.


  1. Looks really nice, have to try it! :)
    Have a nice day

  2. Veggiiieeesss!!! Your salad is really inviting :) You're right, we can est pastries but we have to counterbalance with veggies and fruits :P And green smoothies!

  3. Love the shots! Those eggplants on the vine are stunning.. and the salad looks gorgeous.

  4. Amazing - fresh and a must. Thanks for another goodie!

  5. Thanks Danja. If you try it, I'd love to know what you think of it.

  6. Thanks Gabrielle. I girl can't live on Bear Claws alone - more's the pity.

  7. Thanks Pink Patisserie. We have an enormous organic vegetable and fruit garden. I'm overrun with pretty Japanese Eggplant. I think I like looking at them as much as eating them.

  8. Hey Jessica. It's a hearty salad, full of good things. Means you can have an almost-guilt-free dessert.

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  10. This salad looks amazing! I am not sure where I will get Japanese eggplants from but I am on a mission to find out because they are utterly adorable!

  11. Thanks Brooke. If you can't get Japanese eggplant, then just use 2 normal, big, fat, ones.