Prep 5 mins
Cook 25 mins
I am a big fan of pearl barley as it is cheap, tasty, healthy and very filling. This sounds like a great new way to enjoy pearl barley with a bit of an Italian flare. I originally found this recipe in the BBC Good Food Magazine.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 7 ounces pearl barley
- 2 pints vegetable stock
- 5 ounces peas
- 3 1⁄2 ounces fat-free cream cheese with chives
- 1 bunch chives, snipped
- Heat the oil in a large, deep pan, then gently fry the onion for 3-4 minutes
- Stir in the pearl barley, sizzle for a few mins, then pour in about a third of the stock.
- Simmer fiercely for 20 mins, stirring occasionally, adding more stock gradually as it is absorbed.
- With 5 mins to go, stir in the peas. After 20 mins there should be some liquid left and the barley should be cooked through.
- Turn the heat off under the risotto and let it sit for a min, then stir in the cream cheese and most of the chives.
- Season well and serve scattered with the rest of the chives.
This was so easy to make and was a big hit with my family - especially my our year old son, he had 3 kid-size helpings! It was plenty of food for my fam of four and we also had leftovers. I did the math and it only cost me $5.25 to make! Definitely a keeper! The only changes I made was that I added minced garlic in with the onions and I added frozen peas at the very end, right before the cream cheese. I'm also eager to try new veggie and cream cheese combinations!
This came out really well, even with a bunch of modifications. I had a whole box of instant barley I wanted to use up, so I used 4+ cups of chicken broth and a little more cream cheese. I also added garlic salt, black pepper, garlic pepper, and some herb blend seasoning. Right at the end, the dish was tasting somewhat flat, so I added some white wine, which I absolutely recommend. I will be making this frequently!
I would never have thought of using pearl barley like this, and it was so good! Absolutely loved it, and the little I had left, I froze, and then took to work as my lunch, it freezes beautifully! this is a whole new experience and one I will definitely repeat, thank you for this marvellous discovery! made for Vegetarian swap#11