Arum Nixon's Nutty Grain & Pulse Salad


Arum Nixon's Nutty Grain & Pulse Salad

Nutty Grain and Pulse Salad with Currant and Balsamic Dressing by Arum Nixon

Serves 4

A salad like this is a great option for winter - it’s perfect as a side dish for something like slow-cooked lamb, but could easily become the base for a meal in it’s own right. Please feel free to change up the pulses, grains, nuts etc based on what you like eating, or just what you happen to have in the cupboard at the time.


For the grains and pulses:

150g chickpeas
150g pearl barley
100g whole green lentils
100g beluga lentils
50g roasted almonds
50g mixed seeds such as pepitas and
sunflower seeds

For the dressing:

50g currants
75ml balsamic vinegar
25ml tamari
50ml olive oil


  1. Rinse the chickpeas, cover with water in a small saucepan and bring to the boil for 1 minute. Turn off the heat and leave to soak in the water for 1 hour. Rinse and return the chickpeas to the pan, cover with salted water and simmer for 1 hour or until just tender. Drain the chickpeas and set aside.
  2. Rinse the barley, beluga lentils and green lentils separately. Cook each separately in salted water until tender then drain; the barley will take around 40 minutes, the beluga lentils around 25 minutes, and the green lentils 15-20 minutes.
  3. Roughly chop the almonds. Toast the seeds in a dry pan over a medium heat until fragrant, then combine with the chopped nuts. Mix together with the cooked grains and pulses until well combined.
  4. To make the dressing, heat 50ml of the balsamic vinegar in a small pan over a medium heat, and add the currants. Cook very gently until the vinegar has almost completely reduced and soaked into the currants. Remove from the heat, and add the remaining vinegar, tamari and olive oil. Whisk together until completely combined, check the seasoning, then stir through the salad and mix well.

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