Monday, November 28, 2011

Barley - Again?

In March, 2010, I wrote about barley.  Well, once you discover a good thing, you stick with it.  And I have discovered barley.  Barley can be purchased hulled, pearled and rolled (quick) cook. 

Hulled barley is similar to brown rice.  It retains the bran and therefore, takes longer to cook than pearled or rolled barley.

Pearled barley is similar to white rice.  The bran has been removed.

Rolled barley is flatter and requires the least amount of time to cook.

Although this recipe is included in my holiday collection, this is a great fall recipe and would be a great accompaniment to pork or chicken.  If this dish does not make an appearance at your holiday table, you can still give it a try.

Butternut and Barley Pilaf

Winter squash contributes a rich, full flavor to a simple barley pilaf.  Gremolada, an Italian mixture of parsley, lemon zest and garlic, gives the dish a lively finish.

Serves 6.


2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 can (14 ounce) reduced sodium chicken or vegetable broth
1¾ cups water
1 cup pearled barley
2 cups peeled and cubed butternut squash
cup chopped parsley
1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
1 Tablespoon lemon juice
1 clove of garlic, minced
¼ teaspoon salt, or to taste
Freshly ground pepper, or to taste


1.  Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.  Add onion and cook, stirring often, until softened, 2 to 3 minutes.

2.  Add broth, water and barley; bring to a simmer.  Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until the barley is just beginning to soften.  Add squash and cook until squash and barley are tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed, about 30 minutes.

3.  Add parsley, lemon zest, lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper; mix gently.

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