Recently, I had the opportunity to work alongside a lovely woman by the name of Linda Whitworth who is on a multi-city tour promoting the health benefits of cooking with barley. The grain which is commonly (and lovingly, in our house) associated with beer making has been recognized with the health claim that barley fibre can positively contribute to your wellness by reducing your cholesterol level. I look at this as a bonus because cooking with barley, simply tastes good!
There are many ingredients that I might not ever cook with, were it not for my work as a food stylist. Barley is a good case in point. I keep barley in our pantry for a single family recipe Hamburger Soup. But now that I know the difference between pearl and pot barley (the former is “polished” longer than the latter), and have had the pleasure of baking with barley flour, barley and barley flour will always have a place on my shelf.
First up were Yoghurt Barley Fruit Scones. I made mine with raisins but I would love to try them with blueberries next time. I tucked one away for D to try with his supper. He asked me to please, please make these all the time.
I had to make another substitution as I could not find rhubarb around at this time of year so I made the Rhubarb Pecan Muffins with tart cranberries instead. The topping on these muffins was amazing (and another cholesterol reducer too with the inclusion of quick oats). I plan to mix up a bag of this crumble topping to keep on hand in the freezer to put onto a variety of muffins. I am making banana muffins this afternoon. I often call my muffins “cupcakes” and serve them for dessert.
The recipe that Linda made on set was this gorgeous Black Bean and Barley Salad. It was so simple, so healthy and so delicious-win, win, win!
But my favourite of the day was the Barley Jambalaya. It was so good, that I literally can’t stop thinking about it and just talked myself into making it for mandatory Sunday supper this weekend.
The recipe links here are from the newly launched website that Linda was in town to promote: http://gobarley.com/. Be sure to bookmark it as it is chock full of amazing recipes.
Keep open house, let fidlers play.
A fig for cold, sing care away;
And may they who thereat repine,
On brown bread and on small beer dine.”
from the 1766 ‘Virginia Almanack’
Love-that is all.