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Recipe for barley salad with asparagus, sugar snap peas, and lemon dressing<b><b/> </b>

Barley salad with asparagus and sugar snap peas by Jean Kressy. Karoline Boehm Goodnick for The Boston Globe/Boston Globe

Serves 4

The classic Italian combination of garlic, lemon rind, and parsley, called gremolata, enhances this salad of barley, asparagus, sugar snaps, and cherry tomatoes. Serve with grilled chicken or fish.

cup barley, rinsed
Salt and pepper, to taste
3cups water
1bunch asparagus, ends snapped off, stalks cut
into 2-inch lengths
20sugar snap peas, strings removed, pods cut
thickly on the diagonal
1pint red or golden cherry tomatoes, halved
cup chopped parsley
Grated rind and juice of 1 lemon
1garlic clove, chopped
3tablespoons olive oil, or more if necessary
3scallions, thinly sliced
cup chopped fresh basil

1. In a large saucepan, combine the barley, a generous pinch of salt, and the water. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and cover the pan. Simmer for 35 minutes or until the barley is tender. Drain and transfer to a large bowl.

2. In a saucepan fitted with a steamer insert and several inches of boiling water, steam the asparagus in a covered pan for 3 minutes or until bright green and just tender. Cool under cold running water; drain well. Pat dry with paper towels.


3. Add the asparagus, peas, tomatoes, and parsley to the barley.

4. In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon rind and juice, garlic, salt, and pepper. Gradually whisk in the oil. Pour over the barley and toss gently. Taste for seasoning and add more salt, pepper, or olive oil, if you like. Garnish with scallions and basil.

Jean Kressy