June 3, 2013

Mushroom, Barley and Herb Risotto

Someone on Facebook posted a picture of their lunch - Creamy Mushroom Barley from Happy Herbivore Abroad. I decided I needed just that for dinner. Unfortunately, I'd loaned my book to a friend and didn't want to call and ask for a recipe ;) lest they feel like I was pressuring them to return the book. So I decided to Google a Mushroom & Barley risotto. I found a recipe online which I ended up adapting to the WFPBNO way. 

Mushroom, Barley & Herb Risotto

Prep Time: 30 min

Ingredients (Serves 4):
  1. 1 cup Barley (Hull-less, whole berries)
  2. 2.5 cups Vegetable Broth (or water)
  3. 10-12 White Mushrooms, stemmed and halved. 
  4. 1 Medium White Onion, diced
  5. 1 tbsp Minced Garlic
  6. 2 tbsp Low-Sodium Soy Sauce, or Bragg's Liquid Aminos
  7. 2 tsp Better than Bouillon Mushroom Base
  8. 2 tsp fresh minced Oregano
  9. 2 tsp fresh minced Parsley
  10. 2 tsp fresh minced Basil
  11. Salt and Pepper, to taste

Rinse barley until the water runs clean. Transfer barley to a pressure cooker with 2 cups Vegetable broth and mushroom base and cook on high for 22 minutes. Release steam (or allow to self-dissipate if you have the time). Meanwhile line a deep pot with more vegetable broth, turn heat to medium-high, and add onions and garlic. Saute until garlic is fragrant and onion is cooked down. Add soy sauce, and minced herbs and toss well. Then add mushrooms and cook for another 2-5 minutes. You want the mushrooms to warm up nicely but don't want them to cook down completely. 

Once barley is done, turn heat on medium-high and slowly transfer any liquid in the barley to the mushroom mixture first. Allow liquid to evaporate, not completely, but almost gone. Then add barley in slow scoop-fulls tossing everything in between, until all the barley is transferred. Allow any excess liquid to dry up completely. Serve warm with freshly cracked black pepper. 

My Assessment: We loved it!! Tony had 2 servings!! We both loved the chewy texture of barley in this dish and enjoyed the lovely mushroom flavor imparted by the fresh mushrooms as well as the mushroom base. A+ !!! Next step - when I get my book back, I'll need to compare it to the HHA version. I'd imagine it would be quite similar, as I have adapted my cooking style to match Lindsay's quite closely. (**Note: My barley was a little soupy (added too much water while PCing) so I added some pre-made Brown rice to the risotto to get it dried up and onto the table - we were starving!**). 

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)*: Calories 204 (Fat Calories 11)
Total Fat 1.2 g; Carbohydrates 40.7 g; Fiber 9.4 g; Sugars 2.4 g; Protein 8.4 g

* Nutrition facts are provided for the water option as vegetable broth calorie content can vary a lot.


  1. I'm eating Mushroom, Barley and Herb Risotto even as I type. YUM and so easy. I'm so happy that I found your blog and facebook page.