You're missing out if you haven't tried barley.
Its toothsome texture and nutty flavor make it a great choice for pilaf, barley "risotto," or for adding to soups and casseroles.
Look for barley in these forms:
- Pearl barley has the outer hull removed and has been polished or "pearled." It is sold in regular or quick-cooking forms.
- Scotch or pot barley is less processed than pearl barley. It requires a long soaking period before cooking. Look for it in health food stores.
- Barley Flakes are similar to rolled oats, but thicker and chewier. Use in homemade granola and in baked goods. To heighten barley's nutty flavor, take an extra, easy step -- toast it before cooking. In a heavy, dry pan over low heat, cook barley about 10 mintues, stirring often, until golden brown.