1 cup pearl barley
1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen corn kernels
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons chopped basil or oregano leaves
2 tablespoons sliced chives
1 cup diced red tomatoes
Freshly ground black pepper
8 ounces baby arugula leaves, rinsed and thoroughly dried
3 tablespoons fresh goat cheese, optional
1. Rinse barley, place in a bowl and cover with 4 cups of water. Soak for several hours or overnight.
2. Transfer barley and soaking water to a medium saucepan. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until tender and most or all of water is absorbed, about 20 minutes. Meanwhile, if using frozen corn, cook according to package directions; fresh corn does not need to be cooked.
3. If necessary, drain excess water from barley. Return to pot and immediately add corn; mix well. In a large bowl, mix together oil and vinegar. Add basil or oregano, and chives. Add barley mixture and tomatoes, and mix gently. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
4. To serve, spread arugula on a platter. Top with corn and barley salad. Garnish with dollops of goat cheese, if desired, and serve.