Pearl barley, goat’s cheese and butternut squash risotto
By using pearl barley instead of rice, you can give your risotto a deliciously nutty edge. Chop up the butternut squash in nice big chunks and enjoy the tinge of garlic that gives this dish it’s flavour; with a texture that will leave you wanting more.
Serves 4 Total Time 40 mins
- 1 butternut squash
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
- 5 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, 1 carrot, peeled and 1 celery stick, all finely chopped
- 3 bay leaves
- 8 sage leaves, chopped (extra to serve)
- 250g pearl barley
- 1L chicken or veg stock
- 250g goat’s cheese
- Preheat oven to 180°C/160°C fan/Gas Mark 4.
- Peel and chop the butternut squash into chunks, place on an oven tray with the garlic. Drizzle 2 tbsp olive oil, season and mix well. Cook in the oven for 25–30 mins.
- Start the risotto while the squash is cooking; sauté the onion, carrot, celery, bay and sage leaves in the remaining 3 tbsp olive oil for 5 mins, until soft.
- Add the pearl barley and cook for 1 min. Pour in a splash of stock and set to simmer.
- When it’s nearly absorbed, add a little more and repeat until the stock is used up, or the pearl barley is soft and swollen (about 25–30 mins).
- Retrieve the squash and stir into the risotto. Season to taste and serve in bowls, scattering over the goat’s cheese and a little olive oil.
- Fry the extra sage in olive oil for 1 min and place on top of each bowl.