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I am always on the look out for salads that are fairly simple but a little unusual – variety is the spice of life! So when I came across this Bill Granger recipe in a Sainsburys magazine I knew I was onto a winner. I have made it a few times and it has quickly become a firm favourite. Leftovers keep really well in the fridge and the day after the flavour is even better. Definitely worth a try! As it has broccoli in it Izzy will eat it and I sell the pearl barley as ‘rice’ . She is yet to be convinced on the spinach, or the ‘green stuff’ as she calls it. This night I just served it with a baked chicken breast – would have been better if I had the time to marinate the chicken so it was not so bland. Better time management next time!!

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Pearl barley, broccoli and cashew salad (courtesy of Bill Granger)

Ingredients:-

250g pearl barley

3 tablespoons cashews

400g broccoli, cut into florets

4 spring onions, thinly sliced

100g young leaf spinach

a small handful of mint leaves, torn

For the tamari dressing:

1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil

1 1/2 tablespoons tamari or dark soy sauce

1 1/2 tablespoons mirin or lime juice

1 teaspoon finely grated ginger

Cook the barley in a large pan of lightly salted boiling water for 25-30 minutes until al dente. Drain, then rinse and cool.

Meanwhile, toast the cashews in a small pan until golden, leave to cool.

Blanch the broccoli in a pan of boiling water for 2 minutes until just tender but still bright green. Rinse in cold water and drain well.

Whisk the dressing ingredients together.

In a large bowl, toss together the barley, broccoli, spring onions, spinach, mint and dressing, Serve sprinkled with the toasted cashews, roughly chopped.

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