Bacony Barley Salad with Marinated Shrimp

Here's a great example of how to cook a healthy dish in minutes -- simply cook the bacon in the same pan as the barley to enrich the flavor, add some purchased cooked shrimp, a few aromatic vegetables, and you've got dinner (or a hearty potluck dish) in no time flat.
  • 3 strips bacon, chopped
  • 1 1/3 cups water
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup quick-cooking barley
  • 1 pound peeled cooked shrimp (21-25 per pound; thawed if frozen), tails removed, coarsely chopped
  • 1/3 cup lime juice
  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
  • ½ cup finely diced red onion
  • ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 1 avocado, peeled and diced
1. Cook bacon in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring often, until crispy, about 4 minutes. Drain on paper towel; discard fat. 2. Add water and salt to the pan and bring to a boil. Add barley and return to a simmer. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer until all the liquid is absorbed, 10 to 12 minutes. 3. Combine shrimp and lime juice in a large bowl. Add the cooked barley; toss to coat. Let stand for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, to allow the barley to absorb some of the lime juice. Add tomatoes, onion, cilantro and the bacon; toss to coat. Add oil and pepper and toss again. Stir in avocado and serve.

To Make Ahead: Prepare without avocado, cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days. Stir in the avocado just before serving.

  • Makes 4 servings, 1¾ cups each.
  • Active Minutes: 40
  • Total: 40 minutes
  • Per Serving: 393 calories; 18 g fat (3 g sat, 11 g mono); 228 mg cholesterol; 30 g carbohydrate; 31 g protein; 7 g fiber; 671 mg sodium.
  • Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (50% daily value), Fiber (29% dv), Iron (25% dv), Folate (15% dv).
  • High Fiber
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