I love to make this meal over the winter months, a generous serving in front of the fire, it’s a true winter warmer and everyone loves the flavours.
220g pearl barley, rinsed
40g unsalted butter
4 tbsp olive oil
6 garlic cloves, crushed
1 small leek, washed, finely chopped
2 sicks celery, finely chopped
pinch chilli flakes
1 lemon juice and zest
1 red onion, finely chopped
1 handful dill, roughly chopped
1 tbsp caraway seeds
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1 400g tin chopped tomatoes
3 tbsp tomato paste
600ml vegetable stock
cracked black pepper
- In a large heavy based pot, over a medium heat, melt the butter and 2 tbsp olive oil, cook the leek, red onion, garlic and celery for 5 minutes or until soft.
- Add the barley, half the dill, lemon zest and juice, a pinch of salt, cilli flakes, tomatoes, tomato concentrate and stock. Stir to combine. Bring the mixture to the boil, then reduce heat to a gentle simmer for 35 – 40 minutes, stirring occasionally until all the liquid is absorbed and the barley is tender.
- Meanwhile, in a small dry frying pan, toast the caraway and mustard seeds for 2 minutes. Sprinkle on top of the crumbled feta with 2 tbsp olive oil and the rest of the dill.
- Once the risotto is ready, season to taste, divide between bowls and top with the feta.