I am spoiled. So spoiled. I pay a high price to live where I do, but with the ocean a few minutes away, a city full of amazing food, and fresh local produce pretty much year-round, I feel pretty lucky to call California home. At least, until a big earthquake hits.
If you ever find yourself in Berkeley like I did the other day, please do yourself a favor and visit Berkeley Bowl. The produce section is indescribably amazing. Not only do they have about 20 different kinds of apples and 10 kinds of potatoes, they have signs telling you where each and every item was grown. Except for the shallots and a red onion (which I got at Trader Joe’s a while ago), all the produce in this salad is from California. There were huge piles of local asparagus, ripe avocados, and beautiful oranges. Mike’s only request for dinner was lots of vegetables, so I decided a salad — with barley to make it more filling — would be perfect.
Since I’m not working this week, it was the perfect opportunity to go meet Mike for lunch in the city.
We went to the Ferry Building, which has a huge variety of lunch options. We ended up at Delica.
I got 3 salads: wasabi potato salad (awesome), burdock salad (also tasty), and the hijiki and soybean salad (which is really similar to something I’ve made before).
My only complaint is that the serving sizes were TINY, but that was okay because it meant I had room for dessert!
Cookies and cream gelato… I need more of you in my life.
I love this weather and this view!
1 tbsp finely chopped shallot
1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tsp orange zest
pinch sugar, salt, and pepper
2 tbsp olive oil
1 cup pot barley (slightly less processed than pearl barley, which you can sub if that’s what you have)
2 cups water
3 ounces mixed salad greens
12 spears asparagus, thinly sliced on the diagonal
1 avocado, diced
1/2 cup roughly chopped walnuts, toasted
1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
Bring the water to a boil and add the barley. Turn down to low and simmer, covered, about 45 minutes or until barley is tender. Let cool.
Blanch the asparagus: Bring a small pot of water to a boil. Add the asparagus and cook for 30 seconds, then drain and submerge into cold water to stop the pieces from cooking. Drain well and set aside.
Put the greens and barley in a large bowl. Add the dressing and toss, then add the asparagus, avocado, walnuts, and onion. Mix to combine, then serve.