Squash & barley salad with balsamic vinaigrette

Squash & barley salad with balsamic vinaigrette

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(96 ratings)

Cook: 25 mins 5 mins, plus cooling


Serves 8
A flavour-packed, unusual salad that's delicious warm or cold - works really well as part of a buffet

Nutrition and extra info

  • Dairy-free
  • Vegetarian
  • Vegan

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal301
  • fat14g
  • saturates2g
  • carbs40g
  • sugars9g
  • fibre0g
  • protein6g
  • salt0.55g
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  • 1 butternut squash, peeled and cut into long pieces
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

  • 250g pearl barley
  • 300g Tenderstem broccoli, cut into medium-size pieces



    Like cabbage and cauliflower, broccoli is a brassica and is sometimes known by its Italian name…

  • 100g SunBlush tomato, sliced



    A member of the nightshade family (along with aubergines, peppers and chillies), tomatoes are in…

  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • 2 tbsp pumpkin seeds
  • 1 tbsp small capers, rinsed
    Capers in bowl



    Capers are the small flower buds of the Capparis shrub that grows in the Mediterranean. As they…

  • 15 black olives, pitted
  • 20g pack basil, chopped



    Most closely associated with Mediterranean cooking but also very prevalent in Asian food, the…

For the dressing

  • 5 tbsp balsamic vinegar
    Balsamic vinegar

    Balsamic vinegar

    bal-sam-ick vin-ee-gah

    True Balsamic vinegar is an artisan product from Modena, in Emilia Romagna, Italy, and is made…

  • 6 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped


  1. Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Place the squash on a baking tray and toss with olive oil. Roast for 20 mins. Meanwhile, boil the barley for about 25 mins in salted water until tender, but al dente. While this is happening, whisk the dressing ingredients in a small bowl, then season with salt and pepper. Drain the barley, then tip it into a bowl and pour over the dressing. Mix well and let it cool.

  2. Boil the broccoli in salted water until just tender, then drain and rinse in cold water. Drain and pat dry. Add the broccoli and remaining ingredients to the barley and mix well. This will keep for 3 days in the fridge and is delicious warm or cold.

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Comments, questions and tips

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19th Feb, 2013
This is a super recipe. My husband and I went meat free for Lent and this salad makes a nice substantial veggie meal. I've started a blog documenting our challenge with some veggie East European recipes too: http://mariykasfood.blogspot.co.uk/2013/02/russian-winter-salad-and-cookery-demo.html
5th Jan, 2013
So lovely favour. I made this for Christmas dinner and everyone loved it. I used fried cherry tomatoes instead of dried tomatoes and added some brown rice along with pearl barley. I'll add quinoa next time. I'll make it again, definitely.
kaos01's picture
12th Dec, 2012
Really tasty salad. Didn't have any tenderstem broccoli, so used asparagus instead. And I also put the onions in with the squash, for the last 10 minutes or so. Brought it to a christmas lunch buffet, and it was a big hit. Several people wanted the recipe. Will be making this again, that's for sure :)
20th Nov, 2012
Absolute winner, love this!! Make sure there is plenty of roast squash... Once you have a bite without it, its not the same. Lovely ingredients, great recipe!
22nd Oct, 2012
Very good salad. Something different.
7th Sep, 2012
Absolutely delicious - I added a sliced courgette which I roasted alongside the butternut squash and omitted the olives. Served with roast chicken and green beans. Can't wait to eat the leftovers for lunch tomorrow!
20th Jul, 2012
I made this salad for my daughter's wedding. The buffet was entirely vegetarian and I needed a salad option that was filling and different from the usual pasta salads. It was wonderful and well received!
20th Jun, 2012
I can't recommend this highly enough. Fantastic.
26th Apr, 2012
This salad has generated several requests for the recipe after every occasion I have served it. I changed barley for jasmine rice (because of gluten allergy) and the result is lovely. Have used the salad for a buffet when celebrating my husband's 70th birthday i Denmark as well as for having firends over here in France, where we live in Nice most of the year.
9th Jan, 2012
Really tasty addition to a Christmas buffet. I left out the olives as my family tend to pick them out. I think this would make a good accompaniment to lamb.


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