Potatoes with Pearl Barley is one of the very traditional dishes on the countryside in Chile. I love introducing American friends to this grain and thinking of new ways to serve it. I decided to make this Pearl Barley or Farro Risotto with a risotto technique but using pearl barley and spring vegetables. Delicious and also highly recommended with Fall/Winter vegetables such as pumpkin, mushrooms, Brussel sprouts, broccoli.
(Recipe reviewed and new photos added, February 2017 – originally posted May 2013)
As you can see, I’ve been trying this recipe with other combination of vegetables. Last week we had a Chilean friend for dinner which we had not seen in 7 years, and therefore he almost had not seen me in my blogger/cook version. I could feel the pressure… I made this pearl barley, artichoke, and corn stew and it was a big success. I served it with sauteed pork chops. For dessert, we had homemade Meyer lemon chess pie.
My husband made passion fruit Pisco sour. We had a great time remembering old times.
Pearl Barley or Farro Risotto
for 6 people
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 2 cups of pearl barley or farro
- 1 cup white wine or beer
- 1-liter vegetable broth
- 1 bunch asparagus, cut the hard ends and chop the rest 1 inch long
- 1 small zucchini, cut into slices
- 1 cup frozen peas
- 1 cup shredded Swiss cheese
- 2 tablespoons butter
- oil, salt, pepper, cayenne pepper
- In a large pot with a thick bottom, heat 1 tablespoon butter with 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook for 5-8 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add the barley and cook for 3 minutes, stirring.
- Add wine or beer and cook, stirring until it evaporates completely. Lower the heat to medium.
- Add the broth and set the alarm for 25 minutes. Continue cooking and stir occasionally.
- After 25 minutes, taste it, should be almost done “al dente,” add the chopped asparagus and zucchini and peas. Add cheese, butter, and 1/2 cup of broth, cook for 5 minutes, let it sit for 3 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning. Serve.