Inspired by what we were taught at the sikandalous cuisine master class with the very talented Celebrity Chef Vicky Ratnani I made risotto for the first time using Pearl Barley - it came out delicious as barley has a wonderful nutty flavor . Go with the flow , use what you like and try this.
1 Cup Pearl Barley - Washed and soaked in water for 12-24 hours along with 1 bay leaf.
3 Cups Stock Vegetarian / Chicken.
! leek Chopped .
15 Mushrooms Chopped Large.
4 Fleshy Shitake Mushrooms Chopped.
1 Stick Celery Chopped.
4 Tablespoons chopped Bacon ( Optional )
2 Tablespoon Butter.
5-7 Large Cloves Garlic - Slice long.
2 Tablespoon Cream ( Optional - a good one ! )
Heat some Olive Oil , saute garlic till brown , then add mushrooms and lightly brown them.Remove and set aside.
In the same pan warm up butter add bacon , cook 2-3 minutes yhe add crackle pepper , tip in the vegetables you are using , after they are well coated , with butter and bacon fat add strained barley and saute 5-7 minutes over low heat.Now add half the stock , and cook covered on medium heat till barley is soft with a bite - about another 20 minutes .Keep ' feeding ' barley stock as and when needed.When barley is done , mix in most of the fried mushrooms and garlic , allow flavors to marry . You can add cream at this stage -When serving garnish with some mushrooms and parsley
As I had soaked my barley 24 hours , I needed less stock and my cooking time too was shorter.What you add to your risotto is your choice - just cook it slowly and sit down to a delicious meal in a bowl.
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