For the tabbouleh, cook the pearl barley in simmering water, according to the pack instructions until just tender (probably 25–30 minutes, quicker if pre-soaked), then drain and leave to cool. Roughly chop the parsley, coriander and mint, and finely snip the chives. Toss the herbs, citrus zest and juice, olive oil and some salt and pepper through the cooled pearl barley. Set aside to allow the flavours to mingle.
Meanwhile, combine the ingredients for the spice rub. Very lightly oil the lamb steak, then rub the spice mix all over it. Leave for about 30 minutes to come up to room temperature and absorb some of the flavour of the spices. Then gently scrape off excess spice mix so it doesn’t burn in the pan.
Heat a heavy-based pan or griddle over a high heat. Add the seasoned lamb and ‘dry-fry’ for about 3 minutes on each side, for nicely pink meat (cook it a little longer if you prefer your lamb medium). Transfer to a wooden board to rest for a few minutes.
Divide the herby tabbouleh between serving plates. Slice the lamb steaks into roughly 2cm thick slices and arrange on the tabbouleh. Add a generous spoonful of warm hummus and finish with dukka if you like. Serve with lemon wedges, for squeezing over.
Instead of lamb steaks, use beef rump steak or try spicy lamb sausages such as merguez, or strips of leftover roast lamb – fried and seasoned with the spice mix.
For a more classic tabbouleh, use cracked bulgur wheat instead of pearl barley. Or you can replace the barley with another cooked whole grain, such as spelt, pearl barley, farro (aka emmer), brown rice or even quinoa.
Recipe taken from Eat Better Forever by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall (£26, Bloomsbury). Photography © Simon Wheeler.