Black Bean and Corn Salsa

This recipe makes the best use of black beans and corn with some unusual ingredients that make this dish exciting and delicious.  It can be served as a meal on its own or as a salad to accompany any meat or fish.  It is also an ideal summer party or picnic food and I promise once you taste it with barbecued meats such as ribs you will be very pleased you went to the trouble of trying this recipe.

Ingredients enough for five or six people.

1. 350 gms pearl barley.

2. One cup of good olive oil.

3. One onion finely diced.

4. One jar or can of black beans.

5. One can of regular sweetcorn.

6. Twelve cherry tomatoes cut in half.

7. Garlic to taste, three or four cloves.

8. Capers

9. 25 gms pumpkin seeds.

10. Balsamic vinegar.

11. A good pinch of sea salt and ground black pepper or to taste.


In a large saucepan pour your pearl barley and cover with water, take it to the boil then turn down the heat and simmer for eighteen to twenty minutes or until the barley is al dente.  While the barley is cooking get a good sized bowl and add your olive oil, crushed garlic cloves and a good splash of balsamic vinegar. Season with salt and pepper.  Give this a good stir and put to one side then dice your onion and cut your cherry tomatoes in half.

When the pearl barley is cooked drain off any remaining water and place the barley in a large bowl, gently mix in your onion and tomatoes, black beans, corn, capers and pumpkin seeds.  Now pour over your garlic and balsamic flavored olive oil and thoroughly mix. Taste, if it needs more salt, pepper or oil add to taste.  Cover bowl with cling film and allow to cool then place in refrigerator for four or five hours or preferably overnight allowing all the flavors to mix and mature.

Before serving gently agitate with a fork to fluff up the mix then serve and enjoy.