Barley Clementine Date Salad

Last week, I was lucky enough to spend my birthday at the beach with a dear, dear friend.  It was a wonderful weekend that consisted mainly of beach time, gin & tonics, & unhealthy but delicious eats (hey there, Tom Jenkins, I see you).

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Coming home was, umm, not easy.

After a very fun/indulgent weekend, I came home, sad to see dropping temps and looking to detox.  For weeks now I’ve been dreaming about a grain salad involving citrus, but that was as far as things had gone until my psychic saint of a mother gifted me with a few clementines.  Before I knew it, I had lunch/dinner for the next week.  Aren’t fast recipes just the best?

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Does ANYthing brighten up cold winter days better than citrus?  I didn’t think so.

Barley Clementine Date Salad

  • 3 c. cooked Barley
  • 2 Clementines, sectioned and chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 3/4 c. Dates, chopped
  • Scallions, chopped
  • Splash of Rice Vinegar
  • Olive Oil, Salt, Pepper
  • Optional (see below): Toasted Almonds, Crumbled Feta, Pomegranate Arils

Combine first four ingredients (plus any optional ingredients you choose to use).  Add rice vinegar, olive oil, salt, and pepper to taste.  That’s it!

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It’s abnormally sunny/warm here this week, but doesn’t this look like such a cozy winter lunch?

The great thing about grain salads is that they’re endlessly variable.  Over the past few days I’ve added to this salad several times: first, toasted almonds.  Then, a sprinkling of feta.  And yesterday, after a very exciting trip to the grocery store (I bit the bullet and bought some kombucha– here goes nothing, I guess), the crowning jewel: pomegranate arils.  I don’t have a photo of the salad with the arils in it because I was hungry and it was after dark so the lighting was bad, but trust me– they look so pretty in there.  As pomegranate arils are wont to do.

Just a quick post today!  I have to get back to listening to Christmas music while I dream about the beach.  Because that’s a totally normal thing for an upstate New Yorker to do.  Sigh.  Is it May yet?

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