If you like to add grains to salads (especially for growing kids in the house) you can stick with rice or give barley a try.
Barley has a nice nutty flavor and provides an excellent source of fiber.
One of my favorite barley dishes is apple barley salad. You can serve it as a side dish (goes well with grilled chicken), or it makes a great salad topper (place one cup over 2 cups of baby spinach).
1.5 cup dry barley (makes 3 cups cooked)
2 T honey
2 T Dijon mustard
4 T apple cider vinegar
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 shallot, minced
2 cup celery, sliced thin
2 Granny Smith apples, peeled and chopped
3/4 cup chopped walnuts
½ cup dried cranberries or cherries
Salt and pepper to taste
Cook barley according to package -OR- cook it in a rice cooker. For every rice cooker cup of barley, add 2 rice cooker cups of water. Turns out perfect every time! Let the barley cool.
In a small bowl, prepare the dressing.
In a large bowl, combine salad and barley. Toss the salad with the dressing. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours.