Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic; sauté 2 minutes. Add barley; cook 1 minute. Stir in Homemade Chicken Stock; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 30 minutes. Stir in zucchini, tomatoes, salt, and pepper; cover and cook 5 minutes. Ladle 1 cup barley mixture into each of 4 bowls. Top each serving with 1 1/2 teaspoons feta and parsley, if desired.
The night I made this my husband and I both agreed we neither disliked or liked it. I found something about this dish strange. The broth cooked up much faster than the 30 minutes listed, and for this reason, our zucchini didn't get to cook as long as it needed to - because the barley was already starting to stick to the bottom of the pan. I used regular chicken broth (because that's what we had) and also used parmesan instead of feta because neither of us really like feta. The next day I ate this dish cold and without cheese and liked it much better than the night before when I had eaten it warm. My husband disagreed and liked it better warm, but I would make this again just for me to eat cold for lunch - and it would be easy to take to work with me. Would have given 3 stars if I liked it better warm.
This would make a great weeknight meal since it did not take long to make. I used instant barley and boxed chicken stock to save time. I would suggest to chop the zuchinni smaller and quarter the cherry tomatoes. The feta cheese is essential to the recipe if you do not add the kosher salt. Very good:)
I have made this recipe many, many times. I like taking it to cookouts and potlucks because I think it is just as good at room temperature as it is warm. Every time I bring it to a party multiple people ask me for the recipe. If you've never had pearl barley this dish will win you over. Delicious!
One of my FAVORITE Cooking Light recipes. I make it all the time. It's a great lunch. I generally use chicken broth because I always have it around, and I have never used the fresh parsley. The feta is essential though. It's fresh and filling and delicious!
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