Squash Kale & Barley Salad

squash, kale and barley salad
It may appear on the blog as though I live off cake and cake alone… which is… yeahh partly true (and day without cake… is like a day without… water). As they say; “Man cannot live off bread alone!” – cake is indeed essential..

Ya get me… I live for the sweet stuff.
I’m pretty firmly convinced I have a sugar addiction (I’ve heard that stuff’s legit) but unfortunately, I ain’t planning on quitting anytime soon. (sorry growing gut)

BUT I am a firm believer in balance.
I mean, how else can I justify dessert everyday?
I’m not big on all the healthy fads going in and out, just eating natural produce, cooking with food as close to their original state.
Just honest food. Like how our grandparents ate it. Without all that preservative business, just food that is fresh, seasonal and packed full of love.
And with sugar, because it makes cakes delicious.
with big hearty family meals where you can taste the love.
with bountiful mounds of vegetables and spice,
and without a fear of the carbs of pasta. Cause life’s too short!
Food shouldn’t be shamed it should be celebrated!
No fiff-faffing with chia seeds and gogi berries here (although if you love that sort of stuff, knock your self out!)
All eaten in balance and gratefulness for what we are eating, and that glow is gonna shine all over your happy well fed faces!

squash, kale and barley salad

Speaking of balance and loving the seasonal goodness, those of you that know me well, know I am a bit of a salad fiend.
Like it goes; cake, pasta, SALAD. That is if you put a gun to my head and I had to order my fave foods…

I genuinely enjoy fresh healthy food, not cause I have to, but because it’s delicious!
Forget the boring steamed carrots and raw celery, healthy delicious food is good, achievable, and makes your tastebuds hum for more!
Give it all little love and attention and it’s gonna love you right back.
*preach it sister*

squash, kale and barley salad
So I grabbed my best autumnal pals, the squash (and P.S. how cute is the ‘sweet dumpling squash’! I just wanna cuddle it!), kale (I’m kinda a new kid when it comes to kale, but being in such abundance here in London, boy does it grow on you) and barley (man, the nutty flavour undertones of this grain are unreal, get round it!).
All in one, with a drizzle of tahini dressing and it’s like autumn in a bowl.

BOOM! That’s balance done. I’m a happy chappy and ready for my daily slice of cake …. or two…

serves 2

1/2 cup pearl barley
1 sweet dumpling squash (or you can use any other sort if you’d like!), cut into wedges
2 tablespoon olive oil
1 red onion, cut into thick wedges
1 clove garlic
120g kale
¼ cup pine nuts
100g feta cheese
1/2 cup fresh parsley
salt and pepper to season

1 tbsp tahini
1 lemon juice
2 tblspoon olive oil

1. Preheat the oven to 200C. Start cooking the barley first as it takes the longest. Do this by combining the barley and 1 1/2 cups of water (add salt if you would like) to a medium saucepan and bring to the boil, then lower the heat to a simmer. Cook the barely until soft yet chewy (around 25 minutes).
2. Toss the squash and onion in 1 tbsp of the oil and seasoning, then lay out the squash on a roasting tray, and cook in the oven for 20 mins or until the squash is tender and caramelised. Add the onion around 5 minutes after putting the squash in the oven as it won’t take as long to cook (and burnt onion is never fun)
3. In the meantime, heat the remaining oil in a fry pan over medium heat, add the garlic, cooking until aromatic, then add the kale and sauté until the kale is bright green and soft but still has bite (around 2-3 minutes).
4. Toast the pine nuts, and combine all the dressing ingredients, getting ready to plate.
5. Lay out the barley on a plate and top with the roasted squash, onion and kale. Then sprinkle over the pine nuts, feta, and parsley then drizzle over the dressing and serve!

Thanks for stopping by!



  1. I can wholeheartedly agree with your food choices and your view on dieting and what to eat. Amen sista! This salad looks so yummy! I love barley and squash, and I’ve just gotten onto the kale bandwagon too so this salad is right up my alley. It looks awesome, Bec! Would go perfectly with a slice of cake after 😉

    • Yay! a fellow kindred spirit! :)
      isn’t it autumn perfect! ahhh i couldn’t agree with you more! cake would go down an absolute treat afterwards 😛 x

  2. Same fave food choices for sure – cake, pasta, salad AALLL the way. I could never be gluten free if I had a choice about – bread and past are way too important to life enjoyment!
    And this salad looks awesome – so much flavour going on here with the pine nuts, squash, feta, parsley (and tahini dressing – SO need to try that!!) – you are killing it in the salad stakes! Perfect followed by dessert (honestly, every dinner is improved by cake after, in my opinion!)
    So saving to make when autumn hits over here, thank Bec! X

    • oh couldn’t of said it better myself!! i don’t know how i’d survive if i had to go gluten free!
      hahaha thanks gal! if i’m gonna do a salad, i gotta do it good 😛
      enjoy lovely lady! xx

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