Tag Archives: corn

3 Ways to Eat Barley

22 May

Barley is an excellent source of fiber and essential amino acids (Google it or read the package it comes in). In addition to loving its taste and texture, I’ve noticed that it really has helped improve my digestive system. This fact is not only good news for my general health, but it also seems to have helped boost my metabolism. I feel like eating more yummy sources of fiber, like barley, is helping me lose weight in a really healthy way. Plus, barley is such a versatile grain. Below are just three ways I have incorporated it into our meals. I look forward to hearing more ideas from you readers! [Note: Barley does contain gluten.]

fried egg on barley

For a breakfast high in protein and fiber, throw a fried egg on some boiled barley and enjoy the yumminess!

Breakfast

By itself, boiled barley has a hearty grain taste. I like to cook it for a long time, stirring frequently (and occasionally adding extra water) so that the barley is soft and tender and the starch water thickens to a yummy consistency. Add a bit of salt while cooking. A bowl of this plain barley as a porridge can be a terrific alternative to oatmeal. Or, for extra protein and variety, throw a fried egg on top. It makes for a great-tasting, super healthy breakfast. By the way, in my experience, barley always takes longer to fully cook than the package indicates, so allow for extra boiling time.

Side Dish

The other day, I mixed boiled pearled barley with choclo cut off the cob. (Peruvian corn; for image and other uses, see this recipe). I boiled both separately first, then mixed them together and boiled them for an additional 30 minutes with some butter and salt (stirring every few minutes). The resulting side dish was one of the yummiest things I’ve made in a while. The texture of the corn perfectly complimented the barley. The taste of the extra soft barley with the potato-like corn and butter blended so well! I took some over to Vita’s apartment and we gobbled it all up. We started calling it kasha, which she taught me is a Russian word for a savory, hearty side dish like this turned out to be.

Main Course

I always cook enough dinner so that there are leftovers for lunch the next day. Sometimes there’s even more than that so I try to get creative and use the leftovers in new ways so that we’re not eating the same thing for three or four days in a row. For example, back in April, I made a giant batch of pea soup. There is still one small container of it in the freezer. Once defrosted, it will be enough for one big lunch or two small sides for dinner. However, I’ve also got some plain boiled barley left in the fridge, which can be an excellent ingredient in soup. So, I’m going to combine the leftover soup and the barley as a base for a stew. I haven’t made a final decision yet, but I plan to add some carrots and maybe also some choclo. It’ll be one of the heartiest vegetable stews I’ve ever made. We also have some leftover pulled pork roast, which could be added since the soup was originally ham stock-based, but I’m not sure about that yet.

pearled barley

Barley is a great source of fiber and amino acids. This tasty grain can be used in many types of hot and cold dishes.

There are so many other ways to cook barley. I even saw some recipes for salads that mix barley with soybeans and other veggies, which sounds really yummy. For a salad, I would stop cooking the barley once it reached a sort of “al dente” texture so that it would blend well with other cold veggies because you wouldn’t want mushy barley in a salad.

I hope you enjoy trying it out in new ways in your life!

–Michelle

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Awesome Brazilian Panquecas Recipe In Pictures

16 Apr

Last Friday we had lots of fun visiting our good friends for another round of playing Kinect golf game. The game took a few hours to play and enough exercise for all five of us to get pretty hungry in the evening. That’s when our friend Victor decided to cook panquecas for us. As you can see from the name, panquecas are very much like thin pancakes; I would compare them exactly to french crepes or Russian blintz, rolled with stuffing inside. It was funny to see this type of food prepared since it’s just like a traditional Russian blintz and very close to my heart. But I guess every culture has some sort of variation of this dish. For example, we have this either with meat or it could be sweet, stuffed with mix of cottage cheese and fruit preserves. It’s a very simple dish to make, and I would say the most time-consuming part is probably the panquecas making. It’s very tasty and great either for lunch or dinner. Total making time: around 30-40 minutes.

Ingredients (for 5 people):

Dough

– 2 cups of milk

– 2 cups of flour

– 4 eggs

– pinch of salt

Stuffing

– 1 large onion

– 1 1/2 lbs. of ground beef

– 1 can (15 oz) of crushed tomatoes

– 1 small can of tomato paste

– 1 can (15 oz) of whole kernel corn

– 1 can (3.8 oz) of sliced black olives

– 1 pack of shredded cheese

Rice (side dish)

– 1 cup of rice Continue reading

Leftover Easter Ham Recipe #1: Spring Mix Pasta

11 Apr

Last night my husband had to work the late shift. When I’m on my own for dinner like that, one of two things happens: I either microwave a single serving of something for myself, or I get inspired to do something creative in the kitchen and take advantage of the fact that there won’t be any interruptions. We have a lot of leftover ham from Easter Sunday dinner so I’ve been thinking about all the things I could do with it. In past years, I’ve made all sorts of yummy hot and cold sandwiches with it. But this year, I’m in the mood for something different…and with less bread (one of the things I’m trying to drop off my personal menu in order to lose weight). I mentioned a few potential ideas–such as the ham stock soup I plan to make this week (I will post the recipe)–in my previous post about Easter eating. Looking at what we had to work with in the kitchen last night, this is what I came up with:

leftover ham recipe #1

Leftover Easter Ham Recipe #1: Spring Mix Pasta

Spring Mix Pasta.

Ingredients: 

– leftover ham cut into small pieces

– boiled noodles (I used spaghetti because that’s what we had but penne would be better for this)

– boiled choclo (or corn), cut off the cob

– a green veggie, such as peas or spinach

– seasoned white sauce (butter, flour, milk, salt, pepper, thyme, cumin)

Continue reading

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