Red-pepper Pesto Chicken Strips with Barley & Feta Salad

This isn’t necessarily a ‘knock your socks off’ kind of meal, it’s not necessarily going to be something that you suddenly want to eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner every day, but it’s beautiful in its simplicity, unassuming and un-fussy, and packs a generous punch in the flavour department, so what’s not to love? Oh, and besides being almost ├╝ber healthy, barley is one of the cheapest staples out there, so if you’re feeding a crowd, this is where it’s at.

Serves 2 | Preparation time 10 minutes | Cooking time 20 minutes

WHAT YOU’LL NEED
1 Tbsp red pepper pesto (or any pesto of your choice)
3 chicken breasts, cut into strips
3 Tbsp olive oil
1/3 cup pearled barley
1/2 tsp dried chilli flakes (optional)
1-2 Tbsp red wine vinegar or lemon juice
1 tsp runny honey
Handful of chopped fresh herbs, I like coriander, basil and mint
1 round of feta, roughly crumbled
1/2 avocado, roughly chopped
Freshly ground S + P to taste

WHAT TO DO
1. In a small pot of boiling water, cook the barley according to packet instructions.

2. Pre-heat oven to 200C. Mix together the red pepper pesto and 2 Tbsp olive oil and coat the chicken before placing in an ovenproof dish. When the oven is hot, cook the chicken for 15-20 minutes until cooked through/no longer pink in the middle.

3. When the barley is cooked (after about 20 minutes) drain, drizzle with about 1 Tbsp olive oil and add to it all the remaining ingredients, then toss gently. Spoon into bowls, top with the cooked chicken pieces and enjoy.