Cherie Hausler's Purple Carrot, Fig and Pearl Barley Salad 

Enjoy exclusive access to this stunning recipe from the cover of Cherie Hausler's new cookbook, A Plant-Based Farmhouse

I would happily put fresh figs in everything when they’re in season. I remember helping out with the menu at Eat Me years ago, before it was too grown up to have me playing in the kitchen, and it happened to be fig season when I was working on the recipes. The most amazing fresh figs were coming in to Bangkok from one of our Australian suppliers and it was only when my brother suggested we didn’t need to have a ‘Fig Festival’ that I realised I’d added them to so many dishes, both sweet and savoury. Oops. I might have a bit of a fig blindspot it seems. I’m ok with it though. Mostly because we have 5 fig trees on our hill and when they are all offering up their jammy bounty at once, I’m grateful for my fig based single-mindedness.

I remember living in Sydney and happily paying $3 per fig just to get my fix, so having them in abundance is something that never gets old. There’s the unmistakable taste and texture of a perfectly ripe fig, but the colour palette is also something I’m constantly in awe of every time I split one open. So. Beautiful. This salad is as much about the visuals of all those deep purple tones coming together, as it is about how deliciously the individual flavours hold hands. It might also be a chance to remember just how good pearl barley is too; such a satisfying, spongy little grain, and so often forgotten.

This salad serves 2-4.


400g purple carrots, roasted

250g fresh figs, halved

50g-80g fresh radicchio leaves

250g pearl barley, cooked and cooled

200g purple grapes, halved

100g + 40g extra virgin olive oil

20g balsamic vinegar

8g Za’atar spice mix

3g fresh thyme

5g fresh parsley

5g salt


I use roasted carrots from my Weekly Roast, so they’re not usually hot, but at room temperature. It wouldn’t really matter either way, so don’t panic if you’ve just roasted them and would like to go with a warm version of this salad. In that case, I’d probably make the pearl barley warm too.

If you haven’t included carrots in your Weekly Roast, pre heat the oven to 200C.

Scrub the carrots rather than peel them, and cut into halves lengthways. You want roughly the same sized pieces so they roast evenly.

Put the carrot halves into a deep sided baking pan and drizzle with 100g olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and cover with foil before putting in the oven to bake for 30 minutes.

After 30 minutes remove the foil and give the carrots a bit of a stir through to coat with olive oil from the bottom of the pan. Continue to roast the carrots, uncovered for a further 30 minutes, or until tender.

On a medium sized platter, layer the pearl barley, radicchio leaves and roasted carrots. Add the fresh fig haves and grapes, along with the fresh herbs.

Mix the dressing together by combining the olive oil and balsamic with the Za’atar and salt.

Pour the dressing over the salad and serve immediately.

Recipe extract from 'A Plant-Based Farmhouse' by Cherie Hausler

Signed copies are available online from Booktopia

'I'm thrilled by this beautiful book. Cherie's recipes are bursting with flavour and creativity. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.' Maggie Beer

You might also be interested in:

Stay Up To Date

Sign up to receive our monthly newsletter with upcoming events, producer-in-focus, food news and so much more.

Select one: