Hoisin-Honey-Lime Shrimp Skewers over Warm Barley Salad

Does anyone else feel like this summer has gone by just a little too fast? It’s already the middle of August. Labor Day is a mere 19 days away! By mid-September last year, we were pulling almost-ripe tomatoes off of the vine in anticipation of the first frost. Our first snow fell on October 4. This just in: I’m NOT READY.

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Before the change of seasons comes, bringing with it heartier meals and comfort food, let’s savor summertime eating. Lighter dishes. Outdoor grilling. This meal fits the bill: Hoisin-Honey-Lime Shrimp Skewers over a Warm Barley Salad with Edamame and Pineapple. YUM! Let’s start with the shrimp.

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In a medium-sized bowl, I combined a couple of spoonfuls of hoisin sauce, some honey, a couple of teaspoons of fresh ginger, minced garlic, the juice from half of a lime, and a generous squeeze of Sriracha (we like it hot!). A pound of shrimp, peeled and deveined, landed in the marinade. I made sure every shrimpie was covered with sauce and let the bowl hang out in the refrigerator while I prepped the rest of the meal.

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First, I chopped up some bell pepper and onion into large chunks to be skewered with the shrimp. I’d also use fresh pineapple and cherry tomatoes. Yum!

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Now, for the barley. I simmered a cup of dry barley in a mixture of chicken stock and water for about 45 minutes. While it cooked, I chopped up little chunks of pineapple, some red onion, most of a jalapeno, green onions, and cilantro. I pulled some frozen edamame out of the freezer, too. All of those yummies would be mixed in with the barley.

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I’d been soaking wooden skewers in water for a while (so they wouldn’t burn too quickly on the BBQ). John helped me skewer the marinated shrimp, veggies, and pineapple and took over his spot at the grill. While the skewers cooked, he basted them with the leftover marinade. Look how delectable these are!

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I let the barley cool just a bit before stirring in the rest of the flavors. I love that you can see chunks of pineapple and the edamame throughout the dish. I sprinkled sesame seeds on top. Let’s eat!

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The hoisin-honey-lime glaze on the shrimp is delish, with that little bit of char from the grill. It’s not too sweet, not too spicy, but very flavorful! The chunks of pineapple caramelized on the BBQ, deepening its sweet addition to the skewer. The barley was full of texture: chewy barley, crunchy veggies, sweet pineapple. I scooped a big pile of barley onto the plate and topped it with a shrimp skewer for presentation. To eat, we used a fork and slid the contents of the skewer onto the barley and dug in. (There may or may not have been a squeeze of lime and a drizzle of Sriracha involved.)

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This dish certainly doesn’t require a warm summer evening or an outdoor BBQ; it would be just as scrumptious on an indoor grill on a chilly night. But before we bid adieu to Summer 2014, we’ll be enjoying meals like this one- preferably on the patio, before it’s covered in snow.

I’m not ready.

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Hoisin-Honey-Lime Shrimp Skewers

You’ll need:

  • 1 lb. shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • Juice from half of a lime (plus lime wedges for garnish)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, peeled and minced
  • Generous tablespoon of Sriracha
  • Bell peppers, cut into 2 inch chunks
  • Container of pre-cut fresh pineapple chunks
  • Red onion, cut into 2 inch chunks
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Cilantro for garnish

In a bowl, whisk together the hoisin, honey, lime juice, garlic, ginger, and Sriracha. Add the shrimp and toss to coat completely. Let sit in the fridge for a half hour or more. If using wooden skewers, soak them in water while the shrimp marinates.

Slide the veggies, pineapple and shrimp onto the skewers. Grill over high heat, turning often and basting the skewers with the remaining marinade until the shrimp are cooked through. Serve over scrumptious barley salad with cilantro on top and lime wedges on the side. Savor summertime cooking. Yum!

Warm Barley Salad with Pineapple and Edemame

You’ll need:

  • 1 cup dry barley
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 ½ cups water
  • Tablespoon of chopped jalapeno
  • 2/3 cup small fresh pineapple chunks
  • 2 tablespoons red onion, finely chopped
  • 2 scallions, chopped (white and green parts)
  • 1 cup frozen shelled edamame, thawed
  • ½ cup cilantro plus more for garnish
  • Sesame seeds for garnish

In a medium saucepan, bring the stock and water to a boil. Add the barley. Lower to simmer, put a lid on it, and let it cook for 45 minutes or until the water is absorbed. Remove the barley from the heat and set aside.

When the barley is slightly cooled, transfer it to a bowl. Add the jalapeno, pineapple, red onion, scallions, and the ½ cup of cilantro. Add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle sesame seeds on top before serving. Cheers to the last summer days of the season. Yum!

Hungry for more? Check out the collection of recipes on the FOOD BLISS page!

One year ago: Playing hide and seek with The Bright Side.

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