Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Pearl Barley Risotto with Oyster and Porcini Mushrooms

Some of you will know that I am not a huge mushroom fan, but I don't mind the dried mushrooms - the ones you have to reconstitute in water.  Somehow the flavour is much more intense than the fresh stuff.  Another reason I wanted to make this dish was that I didn't have much in the way of fresh ingredients at home, so its good to have some store-cupboard standbys.  

Anyway, when I went to get out my packet of risotto rice, it dawned on me that I had used it a couple of weeks back for Smoked Paprika Risotto. I have both brown and white rice in jars too but just had my mind set on risotto.  Whilst searching the cupboard, my hands fell upon half a bag of pearl barley reaching its sell by date.  
I recalled that many foodies were now using pearl barley as a change from risotto rice.  With that in mind that is what I decided to do.  It took a little longer to cook, but the result was quite a pleasant. Even D said it made a nice change from rice.  The pearl barley had toothsome bite, and the mushrooms had texture and woodsy flavour.  I will definitely be making it again.
I am sharing this recipe with Tasty Tuesdays hosted by Vicki at Honest Mum; and Recipe of the Week hosted by A Mummy Too.

Pearl Barley Risotto
Serves 3 - 4 as part of a two or three course meal
Ingredients
50g oyster, porcini and shiitake mushrooms, rehydrated in 300ml vegetable stock

3 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, finely sliced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
250g - 300g pearl barley
2 1/2 pints vegetable stock
Salt and pepper to taste
Handful of fresh parsley, minced
Method
In a wide pan, heat the oil.  Stir in the onion and sauté for 10 minutes or until soft. Stir in the garlic until soft, then stir in the pearl barley and cook for a minute or so. 
Gradually start adding the vegetable stock, ladle at a time until the liquid is absorbed before adding the next, when half of the vegetable stock is used, stir in the reconstituted mushrooms and its liquid, stirring frequently until the liquid is absorbed.  Taste and tweak seasoning to taste. Continue stirring in the rest of the liquid until it is all absorbed and the pearl barley is cooked.  About 5 minutes before serving,  stir in the minced parsley. 


13 comments:

  1. Sounds delicious - I feel a bit the same about mushrooms - not my faouvrite veg but if prepared with other food I can enjoy it but a plate of fried mushrooms is not for me. I would definitely enjoy mushrooms this way.. And you have reminded me of some barley in the freezer that I froze to use later.

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    1. Thanks Johanna. So glad I am not along here. I didn't know you could freeze cooked barley.

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  2. We use pearl barley a lot...and it is an "orzotto" with barley :-)
    sometimes I cook the barley in double the quantity of water, then strain when cooked. The barley goes to mix with the cooked veg etc, the water goes to make fresh lemon barley (or whatever fruit you wish) with a little honey to taste....delicious!!

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    1. Thanks gz, I had read orzotto in places but had not made the link.
      Thanks for sharing the idea with the barley liquid. I will def. do that next time, especially with warmer days.

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  3. I have never thought about using pearl barley in risotto, it looks like it works really well. This looks tasty

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    1. Thank you Alison, def. worth trying. I enjoyed it.

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  4. Sounds good. I wonder if it would work with that Frekeh stuff about which I wrote the other day... I need some ideas for how to use it.

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    1. I think it would Mark. I have read that frekeh is similar. I'll see if I can come up with any other ideas for you.

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  5. Looks so tasty and filling, thanks for linking up to #tastytuesdays

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  6. I have just stocked up on some barley for the soup I made this week, so have pinned this as a must try! It looks lovely and dried mushrooms can go a long way...always seem to have more flavour than the ones from the supermarket grocery departments. #RecipeoftheWeek.

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    1. Thank you Sarah, lovely to make your acquaintance. So agree dried ones go a long way and seem to more flavour

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  7. I am slightly obsessed with risotto, and one of my favourite risottos is wild mushroom, but I've never tried it with dried mushrooms or pearl barley, so I'll definitely be giving this a go at some point.
    (Sophie from Franglaise Cooking popping over from #recipeoftheweek & #tastytuesdays)

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