Oct 30, 2012

pearl barley risotto

In the spirit of trying new cooking things and recipes I had been wanting to try a pearl barley risotto.  I do quite a good mushroom risotto with traditional arborio rice but I wanted to expand my repertoire a bit and I absolutely love the taste and texture of pearl barley.  Watching Two Greedy Italians ... Still Hungry the other night I was very excited to see Gennaro do a pearl barley risotto using pork mince.

The recipe was very simple (serves 2):
150grams of pork mince
2-3 handfuls of dry pearl barley
1 litre of stock (I used salt reduced chicken stock but you can use vege stock)
1 onion
olive oil
parmesan cheese

Dice the onion (they used a small brown onion, I used half a red) and sweat off in some oil. Add in the mince, breaking it up and cook, do not brown the mince though.  Throw in your pearl barley and stir the mix as the bottom of your saucepan starts to go a bit toasty.  Deglaze the pan with a splash of white wine or stock.  Here your risotto goes along as a normal rice risotto would - adding your stock a cup at a time until your barley is cooked.  I added a little crack of black pepper towards the end.

At the end stir in a little olive oil to give it a creamy/emulsified feel.  Serve with a little parmesan on top.



The verdict here was great, we ate the whole lot just between the two of us!  I think we may try with some mushrooms next time or maybe some peas.
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