While cooking a double batch of hulled barley with tuna and veggies for our work lunches, I felt inclined to cook a separate batch strictly for cereal. Hulled barley has everything intact but the outside hull and is the most nutritious form you can buy. Pearled barley is still a healthy choice, but it has been stripped of the nutritious husk and bran layers; it does cook faster though!
Cold Tuna Barley Salad for work lunch. Simple, healthy, yum!
Hulled barley is harder for me to find than pearled, so I make sure to get some whenever available. To cook, I simply add the barley to a dry pot over medium high heat and let it toast for a minute or two; stirring constantly. Once you can smell the toasted nuggets, add water and salt, cover, and let simmer for approximately 90 minutes.
Just wash a load of clothes, clean around the house, or get in a workout while waiting for the tiny grains to cook into chewy, nutty gems. Once cooked, add a tablespoon of honey or agave or, if you’re like me, use stevia to sweeten to taste.
Store cooked barley in the fridge to use as a cold cereal treat for breakfast or a healthy dessert. Cold barley mixed with plain Greek yogurt, vanilla extract, and toasted almonds or pistachios makes a well-rounded meal sure to cool you on the hottest summer day. It's not ice cream, but you'll feel a lot better with this.
Alternatively, you could just heat in the microwave if desired, but cold is my preferred choice in the summer. Hot or cold, these nutty grains provide wholesome comfort long after eating.
Q: Have you cooked your own grains to store in the fridge and use as a healthy cereal treat?
I bet you could bake them after cooking on the stove for a crunchy alternative. Don’t think barley is your only option, I’ve done this with quinoa before and think rice, millet, kamut, etc. would be just as pleasing.