I was running between errands, a deadline and cooking dinner that day. Craving for a light and quick lunch I came up with the idea of making this barley salad since I had most of the ingredients sitting in the fridge.
I had some leftover tandoori marinade and boiled barley. I added paneer pieces to the marinade and I quickly roasted the sweet potatoes and paneer in the oven. In 15 minutes I had the roasted veggie and paneer ready. Just added seasoning to the barley and toppings and voila, super healthy and delicious lunch was ready!
It would be great to have these ingredients tucked away in the refrigerator on a weekend and toss up this great salad on a weekday night. You must try this out and I assure you the flavors will make you wanting for more.
The instructions in the recipe are assuming that you start from scratch with the required ingredients.
Prep time: 50 minutes (excludes time for marinating the Paneer)
Cooking time: 15-20 minutes
1-cup barley, washed and soaked in water for 3 hours
150 gms of paneer, cut into thin long slices
One medium sized sweet potato, peeled and sliced lengthwise
1 medium onion, sliced fine
1 tbsp lemon juice
2 tsp smoked paprika, sweet
1 tbsp chopped parsley
2 tbsp of olive oil
Salt to taste
For the tandoori marinade:
2 tsp tandoori masala (This is available in Asian grocery stores, I recommend the brand MDH tandoori masala)
1.5 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp salt
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 tsp of finely chopped ginger
2 tsp of olive oil
Mix the ingredients of the tandoori marinade together. Toss in the paneer pieces and refrigerate for atleast 30 minutes. The longer the better.
Toss the sweet potato slices in olive oil, salt and smoked paprika. Keep aside. Pre-heat the oven to 200 C.
Arrange 2 baking trays with foil or baking paper. In one tray, add the marinated paneer pieces and the second tray add the sweet potato slices. Keep the trays in the oven for 15 minutes until the paneer and sweet potato is roasted. The paneer takes about 15 minutes to get nicely browned on the edges. The sweet potatoes take a bit longer, about 25 minutes.
While the paneer and sweet potato is roasted, boil about 4 cups of water and add the soaked barley with a tsp of salt. Let the barley cook for about 45 minutes until soft. Now drain the water and reserve the barley to be used in the salad.
Once all the ingredients are ready, toss the barley in olive oil, salt, chopped parley, onions and lemon juice. Add half of the paneer pieces and sweet potato pieces and toss the salad once again. Serve this in a bowl and top the salad with the remaining paneer and sweet potato slices. Drizzle some extra virgin olive oil and enjoy!