Greek Chicken and Barley Salad


This simple salad tastes fresh and light, but is still filling.  It also held over as leftovers really well.  It would be perfect to take to a summer potluck or picnic.

Makes 8 cups

For the salad

  • 2 (6 oz.) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • 1/8 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 4 cups less-sodium chicken broth, divided
  • I cup uncooked pearl barley
  • 2 cups seeded cubed cucumber
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 cup cubed yellow bell pepper
  • 1/3 cup feta cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped pitted kalamata olives (optional)

For the dressing

  • 3 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp. grated lemon zest
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp. minced fresh basil
  • 1 tsp. minced fresh thyme
  • 1 tsp. red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp. honey

To prepare salad, sprinkle chicken with 1/8 tsp. salt.  Heat 1 tsp. oil in nonstick skillet over medium high heat.  Add chicken; cook 2 minutes on each side or until browned.  Add 1 cup broth; cover, reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes or until done.  Cool; shred chicken.  Discard broth.

Bring 3 cups broth to boil in a large saucepan; add barley.  Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 35 minutes or until liquid is absorbed.  Fluff with a fork.  Cool.  Combine chicken, barley, cucumber, and next four ingredients in a large bowl.

To prepare dressing, combine 3 Tbsp. oil, zest, and remaining ingredients; stir well.  Add to barley mixture; toss well.  Cover and chill.

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