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Prep 20 mins
Cook 45 mins
Make certain to use only pearl barley for this. This can also be made on top of the stove. The mixture will thicken even more upon standing or refrigeration. My family loves this dish, it's a nice change from rice, hope you enjoy also! Add in the saffron, it really makes a difference in taste!
- 1⁄4 cup butter
- 2 large onions, coarsley chopped
- 1⁄2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried chili pepper flakes (or to taste)
- 1 large bell pepper, seeded and chopped (use red or green)
- 1 pinch saffron (good to add in!) (optional)
- 2 -3 tablespoons minced fresh garlic (or to taste)
- 2 (10 ounce) cans sliced mushrooms, drained
- 1 1⁄2 cups pearl barley, rinsed under cold water
- 3 3⁄4 cups good quality beef or 3 3⁄4 cups chicken broth
- 2 teaspoons seasoning salt (or to taste or use white salt)
- fresh ground black pepper (I use lots!)
- 1⁄3 cup grated parmesan cheese (or more if desired)
- In a Dutch oven melt the butter over medium heat.
- Add in the onion, thyme, chili flakes, bell pepper and saffron (if using) cook for about 8-10 minutes or until the onions are lightly browned (add in the garlic and sliced mushrooms the last 3 minutes of cooking).
- Add in the rinsed barley (I just wash the barley under cold water in a metal strainer) and saute for about 5 minutes, mixing with a wooden spoon.
- Carefully add in the broth and season with seasoned salt and black pepper; mix to combine.
- Bring to a simmer, and boil lightly for 10 minutes on top of stove.
- Set oven to 350 degrees.
- After 10 minutes of simmering on top of the stove, cover and place in the oven.
- Cook for about 45 minutes, or until the barley is at desired tenderness, if you prefer a softer barley, then cook for a longer time.
- Add in Parmesan cheese and mix until the cheese has melted.
I cut the servings down to 4 and made this in the rice cooker. I forgot to cut the butter in half so my concoction was too buttery. But the flavor is good in this and if I had used mushrooms as instructed and used the right amount of butter, I think it would've been 4 stars. So that's what I'll give it instead of 3. It turned out like a risotto in the rice cooker and was really easy.