Monday, March 27, 2017

Barley Risoto

Hi I've not been around for a while but I've been trying some new recopies as I was recently given the news that I am pre diabetic, so I need to review the types of food that I eat.

Everyone might think that as a vegetarian I would automatically have a healthy diet, but it's still possible as a veggie to eat the wrong foods and be unhealthy. One of the key issues is it's not just what your eating but how much! If you eat more calories than you expend you will put on weight, which was one of my issues. So I have been reviewing what I eat and how I eat it.

The following is a healthy Risotto dish made with Barley instead of rice, particularly white rice as barley releases its carbohydrates slowly and gives you a full feeling for longer. So the following is one of my new recipes using Barley.


200g pot/pearl Barley
2 medium Onions
2 Celery sticks
1 small Carrot
2-3 fat garlic cloves
10 medium Button Mushrooms 
20mls vegetable oil of choice (I used cold pressed Rapeseed oil)  
20g Marigold Swiss Bouillon powder
1ltr Water


Soak the Barley for as long as possible or overnight if you are planning your menus in advance.

On the day of cooking make up a stock with the Bouillon powder and a litre of boiling water, you can keep it hot in a pan on the stove.

Finely chop all the vegetables, garlic and the mushroom stalks and sweat of until soft before adding the drained soaked Barley, continue to fry for a few minutes to coat the barley in the oil.

Start to add the stock stirring as you do, as the stock is absorbed by the barley continue adding a bit more, when you have  about 150mls of stock remaining add the sliced mushroom caps and allow them to cook for about 10 minutes. 

If you run out of stock before the barley is cooked to your taste (traditionally risotto rice is left a little al dente) but cook to your taste so add a little water to continue cooking if needed.

That's all there is too it, you can add a little grated cheese if you wish if your not vegetarian Parmesan would be traditional, but vegetarian and vegan alternatives are available, or you could add a vegetarian low fat fromage frais or Greek style yoghurt.

Serve hot, either on its own, with crusty bread or a side of vegetables of your choosing. 

This serves 3-4 people as a main and comes in at about 250-350 calories a portion without the cheese or dairy adding, depending on you apatite. 

*** Remember 30g (1oz) of hard cheese is about 120 calories on its own