Steak Salad with Parmesan Butter, Balsamic Glaze, and Arugula

A few days before I left for a business trip last week, A. and I walked to the Beverly Hills Farmer’s Market to pick up a few things for dinner. Armed with only our appetite and my food notebook nowhere in sight, we had to be spontaneous.


After walking by a lettuce stand and picking up some peppery arugula, I thought a light salad would be the perfect meal. And just for fun, I bought the biggest heirloom tomato I could find, sliced it, salted it, and we ate it plain, without any bread or herbs-- ideal for a warm, late summer evening.

I almost didn’t make the Parmesan butter for this salad. I thought it might be too heavy or greasy, and if you use too much it will certainly be both. But a small, teaspoon-size dollop in the middle of your plate adds the perfect creamy texture to this salad.

Steak Salad with Parmesan Butter, Balsamic Glaze, and Arugula

by The Bon Appétit Test Kitchen

Yield: Makes 2 servings


2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese plus Parmesan cheese shavings
1 1/2 tablespoons butter, room temperature
1 12-ounce rib-eye steak
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup finely chopped shallots
1/2 teaspoon (packed) dark brown sugar
4 cups (lightly packed) arugula
2 large lemon wedges


Mix grated cheese and butter in small bowl. Season generously with salt and pepper; set aside. Sprinkle steak generously with salt and pepper. Heat oil in medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add steak; cook to desired doneness, about 4 minutes per side for medium-rare. Transfer to plate. Add vinegar, shallots, and sugar to skillet; boil until reduced to glaze, stirring constantly, about 1 minute. Divide arugula and Parmesan shavings between 2 plates. Squeeze lemon over. Slice steak; place atop arugula. Top steak with Parmesan butter. Drizzle lightly with glaze.

Arugula and Nectarine Salad

A few months ago when Andrew and I visited wine country, we tasted a lovely Viognier from Melville. It smelled like nectarine from the first swirl, and tasted sweet, yet dry. We bought a bottle and I immediately started thinking of what to serve it with. I imagined my favorite kind of meal: a lingering summer evening with cheese, bread, and a light main course.


Thank you, Food and Wine for a wonderful recipe. If you examine the magazine photo closely, you'll notice that my salad looks nothing like it. To make it a main course, I used a salad-appropriate amount of arugula, gave up on cutting perfect goat cheese rounds, and substituted nectarines for the apricots. I suppose I don't need to tell you how well the evening went. We also ate these for dessert, which, as I've already explained, are only mildly addicting.


For the original recipe, head to Food and Wine

Candied Walnuts

I’m sure this has happened to you. You’re at the store, crossing items off your list, and you can’t find the last ingredient. You’ve combed the aisles, double checking that you didn’t just miss it. That was me, wandering around Gelson’s for candied walnuts, which I was certain they must have. But they didn’t. And I was not prepared to drive from store to store to find them.


So on the drive home I figured there must be a way to make them myself, in less than 30 minutes, because I had to toss them into a salad for the dinner I was going to.  And let me tell you, candied walnuts are a breeze. Aside from the star ingredient, you only need sugar and salt to pull this off. (And it’s really impressive to say that you candied them yourself.)

Candied Walnuts


2 Tablespoons Sugar
½ cup raw walnuts
Pinch of coarse salt


1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Use middle rack in oven. Lay walnuts out on a baking sheet in a single layer. Bake for 5 minutes. Test for doneness. If not quite toasted enough, toast for 1 or 2 more minutes. Be careful not to burn. Remove from oven and let cool in pan on a rack.

2. Pour sugar into a medium saucepan with a thick bottom. Have walnuts nearby, ready to quickly add to the pan at the right time. Cook sugar on medium heat, stirring with a wooden spoon as soon as the sugar begins to melt. Keep stirring until all the sugar has melted and the color is a medium amber. As soon as sugar is melted and the color is a medium amber, add the walnuts to the pan, quickly stirring and coating each piece with the sugar mixture.

3. As soon as the walnuts are coated with the sugar mixture, spread them out on a rimmed baking sheet, lined either with a Silpat non-stick mat, or with wax paper or parchment paper. (As I was out of parchment, foil worked fine.) Use two forks to separate the walnuts from each other, working very quickly. Sprinkle the nuts with the salt. Let cool completely.

Wine Resolution #2 + Truffle Grilled Cheese

photoI’m the kind of person who likes to make lists and then add check marks next to the tasks I complete. Memorial Day weekend allowed me to cross off another wine resolution: Go to a Wine Bar and have a flight of wine.

Andrew and I headed to Bottle Rock in Culver City, a place we had been meaning to try since September. Their concept is simple: order wines by the glass from a prepared list, or order any wine on the menu (at least two glasses) and they’ll open a new bottle. The rest of the bottle will be saved and it’s written on the board for other customers to try. (I know what you’re thinking, we didn’t actually have a flight, but it still counts, especially since this is the first of many wine bars we plan to try.)

We started with a glass of white (Chardonnay for me, Sauvignon Blanc for Andrew) with a cheese platter, then moved to reds for caprese salad with heirloom tomatoes and burrata cheese and their claim to fame, truffle grilled cheese. Let’s just say the grilled cheese was melt-in-your-mouth amazing, so amazing, in fact, that we ordered two.

Here's  a photo of our attempt to recreate it. The white bread slathered with butter was dead-on, but the truffle goat cheese didn’t quite pull through. On our walk back from Whole Foods it occurred to me that the cheese at Bottle Rock was likely a cow’s milk cheese so it would melt like cheddar does. Using goat cheese was the first attempt at many to get it right, and although we didn’t manage to pull it off completely, it's all part of the fun on a culinary adventure. But  don't say you haven't been warned. If you go, order the grilled cheese and you’ll never look back.

A Big Juicy Burger + Homemade Hamburger Buns

Sometimes I rate the quality of a food magazine by the number of pages I dog-ear. A magazine is even better if I find my way back to those pages and make the recipes that initially piqued my interest. Lately, Food & Wine has been hit or miss for me. It just depends on the month, the theme, the recipes themselves, but there have been enough useful issues to warrant renewing my subscription year after year.


So, each year around this time magazines do their summer grilling/summer parties issues, but I was not prepared for what was in store this time around. I’m telling you, I must have dog-eared every other page in the June issue. The cover recipe alone (a big, juicy burger) made my husband pick up the magazine from the ottoman in the living room and bring it to me in the kitchen, hold it up proudly and ask: “When can we make this?”


I have a good feeling about summer. And now that we’ve sold the grill that didn’t fit on our patio and replaced it with a smaller, still functional version that does fit, we’re ready to go. So let’s start grill season off with a classic. Summer is probably the only time I’ll eat a hamburger. I never order them in restaurants, and aside from the occasional In-n-Out drive-through after loading up our trunk at Costco, I pretty much avoid them all together. But now that I’ve discovered I can make my own hamburger buns (people, this was a revelation!), there might be a few more burgers on our menu this season. And if you have ever been to the mostly-West coast burger mecca that is In-n-Out, well, they just might have some competition.


Big Juicy Burger

Recipe adapted from Food & Wine

The original recipe is below, but to make these burgers more like In-n-Out’s, I replaced the raw, red onions with chopped, caramelized onions. Saute them in a pan with olive oil, salt and pepper for about 15-20 minutes. I also omitted the bacon and lost the BLT element, but you’re more than welcome to use it.


1/2 cup mayonnaise

1/3 cup ketchup

1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

1 tablespoon grated onion

1 tablespoon chopped parsley

1 tablespoon chopped tarragon

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

12 ounces thickly sliced bacon

1 1/3 pounds ground beef chuck

1 1/3 pounds ground beef sirloin

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

3 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, cut into 6 slices

6 hamburger buns, split and toasted

6 iceberg lettuce leaves

6 slices of tomato

6 slices of red onion


For the Russian Tarragon dressing, in a medium bowl, whisk the mayonnaise with the ketchup, red wine vinegar, onion, parsley, tarragon and Worcestershire sauce. Cover and refrigerate.

In a large skillet, cook the bacon over moderately high heat, turning once, until crisp, about 6 minutes. Drain and cut the bacon into large pieces.

Light a grill and fill a large bowl with ice water. Gently mix the ground chuck with the ground sirloin, salt and pepper. Form the meat into six 4-inch patties, about 1 1/4 inches thick. Submerge the patties in the cold water and let soak for 30 seconds. Immediately transfer the burgers to the grill and brush with some of the melted butter. Grill over high heat for 9 minutes for medium-rare meat, turning once or twice and brushing occasionally with butter. Top the burgers with the cheese during the last minute of grilling and let melt.

Spread the Russian dressing on the buns. Set the lettuce leaves and tomato slices on the bottom halves and top with the burgers, red onion and bacon. Close the burgers, cut in half and serve right away.


Homemade Hamburger Buns

Recipe courtesy Annie’s Eats

The buns ended up smaller than I expected. I might not have waited long enough for the second rise, but regardless, I ended up with 9, slider-size buns. Next time I’ll make five large buns instead, but you can play around with the recipe until it’s right for you.


1 tbsp. sugar
2 ¼ tsp. instant yeast
¼ cup warm water (105°-115°)
1 cup warm milk (105°-115°)
1 tbsp. vegetable oil
1 tsp. salt
3 to 3 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
1 egg beaten with 1 tbsp. cold water
sesame, poppy or caraway seeds, or coarse salt, for topping


In a bowl of an electric mixer, dissolve the sugar and then the yeast in the warm water.  Add the milk, oil, salt and 1 ½ cups of flour to the yeast mixture.  Beat vigorously for 2 minutes.  Gradually add flour, 2 tablespoons at a time, until the dough begins to pull away from the sides of the bowl.  Switch to the dough hook and knead until you have a smooth and elastic dough, about 7-9 minutes.

Transfer the dough to an oiled bowl.  Turn once to coat the entire ball of dough in oil.  Cover with a tightly-woven dampened towel and let rise until doubled, about one hour.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly oiled work surface.  Working with oiled hands, divide the dough into 9 equal pieces.  Shape each piece into a ball, and flatten into 3 ½ -inch disks.  For soft-sided buns, place them on a well-seasoned baking sheet a half-inch apart so they will grow together when they rise.  For crisper bun, place them three inches apart.

Cover with a towel and let rise until almost doubled, about 45 minutes.

15 minutes before you want to bake the buns, preheat the oven to 400°.  Just before baking, brush the tops of the buns lightly with the egg wash and sprinkle with any desired toppings.

Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the internal temperature of the bread reaches 190°.  When the buns are done, remove them from the baking sheet to cool on a wire rack.  This will prevent the crust from becoming soggy.

* Note: This particular dough should be quite slack, i.e. very relaxed in order to make soft and tender buns.  So you want to add only enough more flour, past the 3 cup point, to make the dough just kneadable, sprinkling in only enough more to keep it from sticking to you or the work surface.

Tuna and Green Bean Salad

Since I went to college near wine country in California, I became obsessed with picnicking shortly after turning 21. With their mature oak trees and captivating views, wineries are absolutely ideal for relaxing the afternoon away. Whenever we made the trip, our plan was usually the same: Leave at 10 am, arrive by 11 am, head to Winery 1, then Winery 2, then stop for a scenic picnic around 1 pm and if we weren't too tired (it's amazing how wine tasting and sunshine takes the energy right out of you), visit Winery 3 before heading back.

Part of the fun was always deciding what to pack in our picnic. This was one of the first salads I started with several yeas ago, and though I have a new affinity for Orzo with Grilled Shrimp and Pesto, I still rely on this salad for picnics. Besides, with all the picnics I tend to go on, the same salad at them all would get a bit boring. To ensure freshness, separate the salad from the dressing while you transport it, and toss just before serving.

In terms of picnic menus, I like to have a main dish (like this salad, or grilled steak with pesto dipping sauce, or Barley Salad with Roasted Tomatoes) to anchor the meal, several sides like cheese and crackers, fruit, pita chips and hummus, and something sweet like brownies for dessert. Aside from a bottle of your favorite wine (many wineries sell their bottles pre-chilled for just this occasion), it’s all you need for a perfect afternoon.

Tuna and Green Bean Salad

Recipe courtesy Giada de Laurentiis

1 1/2 pounds slender green beans, trimmed, halved crosswise
3 teaspoons salt, plus more to taste
2 large red potatoes, diced
1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
8 ounces cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
9 ounces canned tuna packed in oil, drained

Cook the green beans in a large pot of boiling water until crisp-tender, stirring occasionally, about 4 minutes. Using a mesh strainer, transfer the green beans to a large bowl of ice water to cool completely. Drain the green beans and pat dry with a towel. Add 2 teaspoons of salt to the same cooking liquid and bring the liquid to a simmer. Add the potatoes to the simmering liquid and cook until they are just tender but still hold their shape, about 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer the potatoes to the ice water to cool completely. Drain the potatoes and pat dry with a towel.

In a small bowl, whisk the lemon juice, garlic, oil, oregano, 1 teaspoon salt and 3/4 teaspoon pepper. Place the tomatoes, basil and parsley in a large serving bowl. Add the tuna and toss gently to combine. Add the green beans and potatoes and gently combine. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to coat.

Arugula Salad with Warm Goat Cheese

I recently had some goat cheese left over from making Chicken with Goat Cheese and Basil and couldn't resist making this salad. The combination of creamy dessing with gooey, crunchy cheese is perfect as a light lunch or impressive side with something heavier like salmon or steak.

This recipe is for a lot of salad, so if you're only cooking for two you'll have plenty of leftover lettuce and dressing to make salads all week. And if you don't have arugula, any mixed greens will work wonderfully.

Arugula Salad with Warm Goat Cheese

Recipe adapted from Ina Garten

1 (11-ounce) log plain or herbed Montrachet
2 extra-large egg whites, beaten with 1 tablespoon water
Fresh white bread crumbs

For the dressing:
2 tablespoons good cider vinegar
2 tablespoons good Champagne vinegar
Pinch sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 extra-large egg yolk
1 cup good olive oil

Enough mixed salad greens for 6 servings
Olive oil and unsalted butter, for frying

Slice the Montrachet into 12 (1/2-inch-thick) slices. (The easiest way to slice goat cheese is to use a length of dental floss.) Dip each slice into the beaten egg whites, then the bread crumbs, being sure the cheese is thoroughly coated. Place the slices on a rack and chill them for at least 15 minutes.For the dressing, place the vinegars, sugar, salt, pepper, and egg yolk in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade and blend for 1 minute. With the motor running, slowly pour the olive oil through the feed tube until the vinaigrette is thickened. Season, to taste.

Toss the salad greens with enough dressing to moisten, then divide them among 6 plates.

Melt 1 tablespoon oil and 1 tablespoon butter in a saute pan over medium-high heat until just under smoking. Cook the goat cheese rounds quickly on both sides until browned on the outside but not melted inside. Top each salad with 2 (or as many as you'd like!) warm rounds and serve.

Pear and Brie Panini



This sandwich has a little bit of everything. It's sweet, creamy, salty, crunchy, and perfect if you're cooking for one. Of course, it's also great for a crowd, but whenever I have a night alone and don't want to make a fuss in the kitchen, this is what I love to make. Tonight I added prosciutto because I had some left over in the fridge, but it's just fine without. I've made this panini often with just the brie, pear, and arugula and it's an irresistible combination every time.


Pear and Brie Panini

Recipe serves 1



1 ciabatta roll


1 tbsp. olive oil


2 ounces sliced brie (recommended: Saint Andre’)

1 small Bosh pear, cored and cut into thin strips (for one panini you will only need about half the pear)

1 tsp. honey


Freshly ground black pepper


1 handful arugula or spinach




Preheat a grill pan to medium or panini machine. Cut the ciabatta roll in half and brush each side with olive oil. Place them on grill pan and heat until golden, about 3-4 minutes.


Cover the bottom half of the ciabatta roll with brie slices. Top cheese with pear slices and drizzle with honey and a sprinkle of freshly ground pepper. Top with a handful of arugula and grilled proscuito, if using. Place the warm top half of the bread over the arugula and return to the grill for 2-4 minutes more to melt the cheese.


Remove from grill, cut in half, and serve immediately.

Orzo with Grilled Shrimp and Pesto





I know I recently said that this barley salad is perfect for summer picnics, but Orzo with Grilled Shrimp and Pesto is equally perfect. (Ok, it might be one of my favorite pasta salads of all time.) I scrambled to make this on my lunch break so it could chill before a picnic later that night, but most of the preparations can be done the day before.


To make things easier, I used frozen, pre-cooked shrimp I already had in the freezer. You'll get bonus points for making your own pesto (just blend basil, toasted pine nuts, salt, pepper, Parmesan cheese and garlic in a food processor; stream in olive oil), but using store bought pesto is completely acceptable. Also, don't be afraid of a little salt. Add some when you first combine the ingredients, then taste the mixture after it has had a few hours to chill and add salt accordingly. The flavors are greatly enhanced if it's salted properly. Just add slowly, combine, and taste. Repeat as needed.




Orzo with Grilled Shrimp and Pesto


Adapted from Bon Appétit | June 2008


3 cups orzo


6 ½ tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided


4 tablespoons red wine vinegar, divided


2 medium zucchini or summer squash, cut lengthwise

1/4 cup store-bought pesto (or more/less, depending on your preference)

2 cups large shrimp (the recipe has you grill them, but I saved time and thawed pre-cooked shrimp)


2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved


1 8-ounce ball fresh mozzarella cheese, cut into ½ inch cubes


1/3 cup thinly sliced fresh basil leaves


Juice of 1 lemon


salt and pepper to taste




Cook orzo in large pot of boiling salted water until tender but still firm to bite (about 8 minutes), stirring occasionally. Drain. Rinse with cold water; drain well. Transfer to large bowl and toss with 1 tablespoon oil. Allow orzo to come to room temperature before tossing with other ingredients.


Prepare barbecue (medium-high heat). Whisk 2 tablespoons oil and 2 tablespoons vinegar in small bowl. Brush zucchini and bell pepper with oil mixture, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill for 3 minutes per side and let rest. Cut into ½ inch pieces and set aside.


If grilling shrimp, sprinkle with salt and pepper and brush with olive oil, then grill for 2-3 minutes per side. Otherwise, thaw frozen shrimp in warm water for 5 minutes. Cut off tail and cut shrimp into ½ inch pieces. Add shrimp to bowl with zucchini.


Add remaining vinaigrette, pesto, tomatoes, sliced basil, zucchini, shrimp (if using), lemon juice and mozzarella to orzo; toss to combine. Season to taste with salt and pepper. DO AHEAD: Can be made 2 hours ahead. Cover; chill.


Garnish with basil sprigs and serve cold or at room temperature.




Hummus and Grilled Vegetable Wrap

This was easy night. I wanted to make something healthy and uncomplicated. Although this combination of terms can often mean boring, tonight I was pleasantly surprised to discover how delicious these wraps were. Smooth avocado and hummus alongside crunchy, sweet vegetables can’t go wrong – especially for a warm, summer night (and I know we’re having a LOT of those).

Don’t feel bound to the recipe – use what you have already or pick your favorite vegetables to grill. I glanced at Ellie Krieger’s version for inspiration, but ended up using arugula instead of spinach (because I already had some), adding the rest of my tomatoes to the grill, and omitting the onion and mint.

I decided to make my own hummus (recipe below), but store-bought makes this recipe even easier. The hummus is also perfect on its own with soft pita wedges.

For Wraps

2 medium zucchini, cut lengthwise into 1/4-inch slices

2 teaspoons olive oil

1/8 teaspoon salt

Pinch freshly ground black pepper

1 cup store-bought hummus

4 pieces whole-wheat wrap bread (about 9 inches in diameter)

1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted

1 medium red bell pepper, thinly sliced

2 ounces baby spinach leaves (2 cups lightly packed)

1/2 cup red onion thinly sliced into half moons

1/4 cup fresh mint leaves

Preheat the grill or grill pan over medium heat. Brush both sides of the zucchini slices with the oil and sprinkle with the salt and pepper. Grill until tender and slightly browned, about 4 minutes per side.

Spread 1/4 cup of the hummus over each piece of bread. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of pine nuts on top. Top with 3 slices of zucchini, 2 pieces of red pepper, 1/2 cup of the spinach, a few sliced onions, and 1 tablespoon of the mint. Roll each of them up and cut in half on a diagonal.

For Hummus

Recipe courtesy Ina Garten

4 garlic cloves

2 cups canned chickpeas, drained, liquid reserved

1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt

1/3 cup tahini (sesame paste) - Tahini paste was nowhere to be found in my kitchen, so I used a tablespoon or so of sesame oil instead

6 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (2 lemons)

2 tablespoons water or liquid from the chickpeas

8 dashes hot sauce

Turn on the food processor fitted with the steel blade and drop the garlic down the feed tube; process until it's minced. Add the rest of the ingredients to the food processor and process until the hummus is coarsely pureed. Taste, for seasoning, and serve chilled or at room temperature.

Steak Sandwich



I've made this sandwich more times than I can count, and have never been disappointed. Originally featured on Barefoot Contessa, the only change I’ve made to her recipe is grilling the bread prior to assembling the sandwich. I like a bit of a crunch.


Steak Sandwich


Recipe adapted from Ina Garten


Makes 4 sandwiches


1 (12-ounce) 1-inch thick New York strip boneless beef top loin steak


Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


Olive oil


1 large yellow onion, sliced in rings


1 recipe Mustard Mayo, recipe follows


4 ciabatta rolls, sliced in 1/2


1 cup arugula


Season the steak with salt and pepper on both sides. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a medium sauté pan over high heat until it's almost smoking, then sear the steak on each side for 1 minute. Reduce the heat to low and cook the steak for about 7 to 10 minutes, turning once, until very rare in the middle. Remove to a plate, cover tightly with aluminum foil, and allow to sit for 10 minutes. Slice the steak into strips.



In a medium sauté pan, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and sauté until the onions are browned and caramelized, about 10 minutes.



Heat a grill pan on medium-high heat. Drizzle olive oil over sliced bread and place on the grill for several minutes, until bread is golden.















To assemble the sandwiches, spread a spoonful of Mustard Mayo on the bottom half of each roll. Place a layer of steak strips on top of the mayo. Carefully arrange a handful of arugula over the steak and top with the caramelized onions and cover the sandwiches with the top half of the rolls.




Mustard Mayo:


3/4 cup good mayonnaise


1 tablespoon Dijon mustard


1 tablespoon whole-grain mustard


2 tablespoons sour cream


1/8 teaspoon kosher salt


Whisk the ingredients together in a small bowl. Serve at room temperature.


Yield: 1 cup

Barley Salad with Roasted Tomatoes

If you need something to take to a picnic or BBQ this summer, try this. Barley salad can be served warm, cold, or at room temperature, making this a great option for travel.

Barley has existed for centuries, dating back to ancient Egypt when it was used to make bread and beer. Today, barley is available in most grocery stores, so it's easier than ever to enjoy this healthy, light salad.

I first came across a similar recipe in Martha Stewart Living under the guise of Roated-Tomato Tabbouleh. It called for bulgur wheat, which I couldn’t find (FYI – bulgur is in the baking aisle, not the grain aisle), so I substituted barley and found it to work just as well. After adding water, the barley takes care of itself on the stove for about 45 minutes.

While the barley cooks, you can prepare the other ingredients and roast the tomatoes. Many similar salads call for halved cherry tomatoes (which I also love!), but taking time to roast them brings out their sweetness and adds a depth of flavor that you wouldn’t experience by simply tossing in raw, diced tomatoes.

Barley Salad with Roasted Tomatoes

2 cups barley

1 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped

1 cup fresh parsley, chopped

10 large mint leaves, chopped

6 plum or Roma tomatoes, halved

1 garlic clove, minced

2 tablespoons red wine or sherry vinegar

1-4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

2 scallions, thinly sliced

Juice of 1 lemon

Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Cook barley according to package directions and set aside in a large glass bowl.

Combine chopped herbs in a bowl, reserving 2 tbsp. basil and parsley. Toss tomatoes with garlic, vinegar, 1 teaspoon oil reserved parsley and basil mixture, and place on a foil-lined baking sheet. Roast until tomatoes begin to soften, about 15 minutes. Let cool, and chop into smaller pieces.

Add roasted-tomatoes, remaining herbs, scallions, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and oil to barley ad gently toss. Salad can be served warm, chilled or at room temperature.