Recipes · Risotto

Great Healthy Side Dishes: Creamy Spring Barley Risotto

Creamy Spring Barley Risotto Goes perfectly with the light flavors of chicken, pheasant, shrimp or salmon. If your up for it, you could forage for your own asparagus.  Wild asparagus is amazing. For me that would require a snow shovel and gloves mittens and a hat.  

local goodness

When my kids were young they loved to go foraging. Looking for hidden secret food treasures like; mushrooms, wild onions, berries, nuts, and other edible plants were a fun family outing. Wild blue berries are still their favorite to look for even though, our two oldest are 22 and 20. Teaching kids to live off the land in any small way can have a big return for you. Because, eventually the will go off by themselves and bring you a satisfying amount of goodness!

5 cups of chicken broth

5 cups water

1 onion chopped fine

1-2 carrots chopped fine

1 tablespoon of olive oil

2 cups pearl barley

½ cup white wine

1 cup grated Parmesan cheese

2 tablespoons of butter

Salt and pepper

Fresh or frozen peas (thawed)

1 bunch asparagus

Pan sautéed chicken, pheasant, salmon or shrimp

Great side dishes
We served it with both shrimp and chicken…yummmy!


In a large sauce pan bring both the broth and water to a slow simmer and keep covered on a back burner.

In another large sauce pan, sauté the onion, carrot, and oil for 3 minutes and cover and cook over low heat until vegetables are tender. Add the barley and increase heat, stirring constantly, cook until lightly toasted, about 5 minutes. Stir in wine, continue to cook, stirring often until wine is absorbed.

Stir in 3 ½ cups of the broth/water combo, stir occasionally, until the broth is absorbed. Add 2 more cups of broth and continue to cook 15-18 minutes longer.

While risotto is finishing cooking, heat a fry pan over high heat and add asparagus, sauté for 3 minutes until slightly cooked. Set aside.

Continue to cook risotto adding more broth until grains are cooked through. Remove from heat, stir in cheese and salt and pepper to taste. Gently fold in the thawed peas and asparagus.

Serves 4

3 thoughts on “Great Healthy Side Dishes: Creamy Spring Barley Risotto

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