Fresh Herbed Barley Pilaf

Fresh Herbed Barley Pilaf

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Ingredients

  • 1 to 2 cups sliced crimini or wild mushrooms
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small onion or shallot, diced
  • 1 small leek, thinly sliced into half-moons
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons fresh herbs, such as thyme or sage
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons fresh parsley and/or fresh chives
  • 2 cups cooked hulled barley (see note)
  • Dried fruit or chopped nuts (optional)

Directions

Heat a saucepan until a few drops of water will “dance” on it. Add mushrooms and dry-sauté until they have released most of their juices, about 6 minutes. Add oil, onions or shallots, leeks and herbs; sauté until tender and beginning to brown.

Stir in cooked barley and toss together until heated through and flavors are blended. Add fruit or nuts, if desired.

Special notes:

Soak barley for a few hours or overnight before cooking. (This isn’t necessary but it gives a tender, easy-to-digest product.) Hulled barley can take from 45 to 90 minutes to cook. Pressure-cook a large batch, about 3 cups raw, and use it for soup and a few other treats.