One source of inspiration, is za’atar.
Za’atar is a mixture of sumac, sesame seeds & herbs frequently used in the Middle East and Mediterranean areas. We bought ours at the fantastic Ottolenghi shop in London, but Giovanni’s, in Cape Town, have a fab locally made one. Kirsty made this amazing Parsley & Barley salad, adapted from Jerusalem: A Cookbook, for a dinner party and za’atar is one of the ingredients.
Parsley and Barley Salad
- 1/2 cup pearl barley
- 200g feta, broken into pieces
- 6 Tbsp olive oil (divided)
- 1 tsp za’atar
- 1 tsp crushed coriander seeds
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1/4 cup chopped parsley
- 1/3 cup finely chopped green onion
- 2 cloves garlic crushed
- 1/3 cup cashews toasted and crushed
- 1 green pepper chopped
- 3 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
- salt & pepper
Fill a medium pot with water and bring to a boil, then add barley. Boil for about 30min, until barley is tender but still chewy. Drain and reserve in a large bowl. While barley is cooking, mix together 2 Tbsp olive oil, za’atar, coriander and cumin. Pour over broken feta pieces and gently mix together to marinate.
To the barley add parsley, green onion, garlic, cashews, green pepper, lemon juice and salt/pepper. Top with the marinated feta. Yum!