Barley is packed with vitamins (such as B & E), minerals (including selenium), antioxidants and phytonutrients that promote a healthy digestive system. This barley risotto recipe features a number of delicious ingredients that will complement your autumn and winter diets fabulously!
1 cup pearled barley (use quinoa to make gluten-free)
1/2 cup dry white wine
3 chicken thigh fillets, each cut into 4 pieces
7oz mushrooms, quartered
2 medium zucchinis, cut in half lengthways, then sliced 1cm wide
1/2 cup shelled edamame (can replace with 2 cups baby spinach leaves)
1 tablespoon light soy sauce
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Heat a large pot over medium heat. When hot, add 1 tablespoon of oil, as well as the butter and onions; cook onions until they soften (about 3-4 minutes).
Add garlic and chili, sauté for 1-2 minutes.
Add the barley and stir to coat with oil and butter mix (about 2 minutes).
Add the wine and cook until it evaporates.
Meanwhile, bring the stock to the boil in a saucepan, then turn down to a simmer.
Ladle into the barley about 1 cup of stock at a time, and stir with a wooden spoon until this evaporates. After adding 3 cups, add the last cup one quarter at a time. (The risotto should be neither too dry nor too wet and soup-like.) It will take about 40-50 minutes to cook; allow the barley to become tender.
Meanwhile, heat a frying pan over medium heat. When hot, add 1-2 teaspoons of oil and the chicken thigh fillets. Cook for a few minutes on each side until brown.
Remove chicken from frying pan and add to barley mixture. (It will need at least 15 minutes in the risotto to ensure it is cooked through.)
Add 1-2 teaspoons of oil to the same frying pan, over medium heat, along with half of the mushrooms and cook until soft and lightly browned.
Remove mushrooms from frying pan and add to barley mixture along with zucchini.
With 5-10 minutes to go, cook the remaining mushrooms and stir through the risotto along with the edamame.
When cooked, add pepper, then taste and add soy sauce as necessary. Spoon into bowls. Serve with steamed broccoli and beans.