Monday, August 19, 2013

Purple Prairie Barley Salad

Until last week, I had never heard of Purple Prairie Barley.  I didn't even know such a thing existed.  I've been eating barley since I was little, but had only ever heard of whole, hulled, pot and pearl barley.  It was at the Bulk Barn last week that I first came across this new (to me) kind of barley.  Since I can never pass up an opportunity to try a new food, I had to buy some and give it a try.  I took it home and got to work on it almost immediately and came up with this barley salad.
Here's what I did...
 This is what the Bulk Barn has to say about the purple barley.

 And this is what it looks like dry.

I wanted to use it fairly quickly, so instead of soaking it overnight I decided to do the quick-soak method.  I rinsed it several times, covered it with water in a small pot, brought it to the boil, then turned off the heat and covered it for an hour.  Then I changed the water and simmered it until tender.  It lost some of its pretty, purple colour after cooking.

I made a dressing with white balsamic vinegar, extra-virgin olive oil, whole-grain mustard, Celtic sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.

I rinsed and drained the barley and then added it to the bowl with the dressing.

I added a bunch of chopped green onions

and a chopped red pepper.

Then I added some diced English cucumber and chopped yellow grape tomatoes.

I mixed it all together 

and then I thought "hey, an avocado would be nice in this" so I diced one up and added it.  The result was a delicious whole-grain salad.


  1. I agree, I love purple prairie barley - one of the healthiest barleys you can buy. And I really love this salad recipe you've come up with! I used to buy it at Bulk Barn as well but it seems that they have discontinued it. I am in Canada too and have been looking for another source for this purple prairie barley ever since. I can't seem to find it ... unless you buy on Amazon for triple the price. Do you have any suggestions for where to buy this barley now? Thank you!

    1. Unfortunately, no I haven't found another source for it. I've seen it once or twice at Winners/Homesense, but of course that's hit and miss at the best of times.


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