Jul 19, 2012 8:00 AM

Author: Marissa Villasenor

University of Utah Hospital's new executive chef, Peter Castillo, was at KUTV’s Health Fair last weekend at the South Towne Expo Center in Sandy. He gave healthy cooking demonstrations and tips on how to enjoy a healthy summer with the right foods. If you weren’t able to make it to the health fair, here are some of Chef Castillo’s summer time favorites.


Chef Peter Castillo C.E.C.

Corporate Executive Chef

University of Utah Hospitals and Clinics


4 c. cooked barley

1/4 c. virgin olive oil

3 tbsp fresh lemon juice

1 tbsp fresh lemon zest

2 cloves finely minced garlic

1 c. coarsely chopped mint leaves

1/2 c. chopped fresh cilantro

1/2 c. chopped parsley

2 c. seeded and diced plum tomatoes

2 c. seeded and diced cucumber

1/2 c. thinly sliced scallions

Kosher or sea salt and black pepper to taste

Toss cooked barley (be sure not to over cook) in a large bowl with the olive oil, lemon juice and garlic. Add the chopped mint, cilantro and parsley. Toss in tomatoes, cucumbers and scallions. Season with salt and pepper.

Toss gently but thoroughly. Let rest for 1 hour so the flavors can blend. Chill before serving.

Serves 12.


Mexican Fruit Salad with Fresh Lime and Cayenne

Chef Peter Castillo C.E.C.

Corporate Executive Chef

University of Utah Hospitals

Choose 1, 2, 3 or more fruits and/or vegetables—here are some that work well:

  • 1 cup mango, peeled and diced
  • 1 cup pineapple, peeled and diced
  • 1 cup watermelon, peeled and diced
  • 1 cup cantaloupe or other melon, peeled and diced
  • 1 cup cucumber
  • ¼ cup red onion, sliced thin

½ cup fresh lime juice
2 tsp cayenne pepper
½ tsp kosher or sea salt, to taste

Prepare the fruit. Slice up the fruits (and vegetables, if you're using them). For the salad you see here, I used pineapple, mango, watermelon, and cucumber. Slice them into big chunks and spears—this is street food, often eaten with your fingers. You can make the salad ahead of time, up to this point, and chill the fruit until you’re ready to serve.

Assemble the salad. Place the fruit in a large, shallow bowl. Squeeze lime juice over it. Season fruit generously with the salt and cayenne pepper. Stir gently with a rubber spatula to avoid damaging fruit and taste. You’ll probably want to add more cayenne pepper; keep adding, stirring, and tasting until you pick up the flavor of the cayenne pepper and a little heat. Add as much cayenne pepper as you and your dinner guests can comfortably take—that’s a key part of this salad’s charm. Serve immediately.

You will be amazed at the flavors of this salad and the ease of preparation. Serve alongside a grilled chicken breast or a marinated and grilled flank steak. I prefer it on a hot day chilled and enjoyed with some iced hibiscus tea. This seasoning combination is also great on apples, pears, or stone fruit.

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