Confession: after taking this picture I loaded on more tahini dressing. It’s just too good. Pair this with a simple bean soup and you have a balanced and incredibly nutritious meal.
For this recipe I used the tahini dressing from Alicia Silverstone’s book The Kind Diet, a book filled with well-researched information and delicious recipes. This tahini dressing is used in her barley casserole, an awesome dish. In the interest of copyright protection, I’ll just tell you that you should get the book. In the meantime, it’s an oil-free dressing and in my opinion what makes it extra-special is the addition of shoyu.
Now to the barley–if you can find hulled barley, choose that over pearl barley and choose EVERYTHING over quick-cook barley. Hulled barley is an actual whole grain, whereas pearl barley has been polished to remove the outer bran layer. Here’s some more info from the Whole Grains Council: Types of Barley. Now that that’s settled, simple cooking instructions–soak overnight, drain water and add more; I did 3 cups water to 1 cup barley, and had a little to strain off at the end. Boil for 45 minutes to an hour (will be closer to an hour for hulled barley).
Shred the kale and slice the carrots into matchsticks. Heat a little bit of olive oil in a skillet at low-medium heat. When heated, add the kale and carrots and cook only until the kale is bright green. I like to stop there so that the kale and carrots still have a little bit of crunch.
To assemble put down a layer of barley, then kale & carrots, and drizzle with tahini dressing. Slow down and really chew this dish, so you can get all of the nutrients. Yum.