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Barley Salad with Strawberries, Jicama and Lime-Mint Dressing

Jicama is a crispy, sweet tuber that resembles a turnip. It’s a wonderful complement to juicy strawberries and tender, chewy barley in a tangy lime and mint dressing. For best flavour, allow the dressing to mellow in the fridge before serving.

¾ cup (175 mL) pot or pearl barley
½ cup (125 mL) fruit juice (apple, orange or berry)
2 cups (500 mL) water
1 cup (250 mL) diced fresh strawberries
1 cup (250 mL) peeled and diced jicama
¼ cup (60 mL) roasted, unsalted pumpkin seeds
2 green onions, thinly sliced

¼ cup (60 mL) lime juice
1 Tbsp (15 mL) canola oil
2 tsp (10 mL) liquid honey
1 tsp (5 mL) crushed dried mint
½ tsp (2 mL) cumin
Coarsely ground black pepper, to taste

In a medium saucepan, combine barley, juice and water. Over medium-low heat, simmer until barley is tender and all liquid is absorbed, approximately 40 minutes. Remove from heat, fluff barley and cool slightly.

In a salad bowl, toss together strawberries, jicama, pumpkin seeds and green onions. Add cooled barley and combine well.

In a measuring cup or small, deep bowl, whisk together juice, oil, honey, mint, cumin and pepper until well blended. Stir into salad ingredients. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to 24 hours before serving to allow flavours to bleld.

Makes 8 servings (½ cup/125 mL each).

Nutritional Information (per serving):

Calories: 130
Protein: 3 g
Carbohydrate: 22 g
Fibre: 5 g
Sugars: 5 g
Fat: 4 g
Saturated Fat: 0.5 g
Trans Fat: 0 g
Cholesterol: 0 mg
Sodium: 7 mg
Potassium: 153 mg