image from Real Foods
I’ve been meaning to try this for ages, so here you go.
1 cup barley (you should strictly speaking, use pearl, but I used what was in the cupboard, and it was fine)
1 butternut squash, peeled (ugh) and diced
3-4 cloves of garlic, crushed
3 cups water
1 chicken stock cube (or use stock, if you have it handy)
1 shallot, finely sliced
some thyme, fresh or dried
about ½ small glass white wine (or cider would work, or vermouth)
some feta cheese (optional)
Soften the shallot and garlic in a little oil or butter, add the thyme, (or sage, in our case, as Pete had a mad moment and picked the wrong herb from the garden), and then the barley. Cook until the grains are toasted.
Put that in a slow cooker on high, add the squash and the water/stock cube, bit of salt and black pepper. Leave well alone for 4-5 hours. At that point, I thought it looked a bit dry, which is when I added the wine, and ⅓ of a block of feta cut into cubes, and left it for another hour or so.
Feel free to garnish with flat leaf parsley; having sallied up the road to buy a huge bunch (because the Indian and Continental don’t sell small ones), I completely forgot, so will have to think of something else to use it up.
Very nice indeed., and a great alternative to a rice risotto for those of us who aren’t supposed to eat many carbs. Um.
This was supposed to feed three; it fed two greedy folk, with a bit left over, which went into the soup pot.