I was trying to clear my pantry the other day and decided to use up an open package of pearl barley. I made the barley and was stuck with a whole tonne of boiled barley. Usually I would throw this away but I am trying to reduce the amount of food waste in the house so I went searching for barley recipes. I found this recipe via the Kitchn. It is from 101 Cookbooks, one of my favourite sites for “health-inspired” foods.
The original recipe calls for brown rice but you can also use farrow, barley or any other grain. However, ensure the grain isn’t tiny like quinoa or cous cous. Israeli cous cous would probably be okay though.
I didn’t have fresh tarragon on hand so I used dried. The second time I made this, I used dried thyme.
Mushroom Barley Casserole
(taken and adapted ever so slightly from 101 Cookbooks; click here for recipe)
- 1/2 pound (8 ounces) brown mushrooms, cleaned and chopped
- 1 large onion, well chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 3 cups cooked barley, room temperature (as mentioned above, the original recipe calls for brown rice, but you can use any other grain)
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup cottage cheese
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
- 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese or any hard cheese (e.g., Romano, Asiago)
- 1 teaspoon dried tarragon or thyme
- Preheat oven to 350F degrees.
- In a large skillet over medium-high heat saute the mushrooms in a glug of olive oil sprinkled with a couple pinches of salt. Stir every minute or so until the mushrooms have released their liquid and have browned a bit. Add the onions and cook for another 4 or 5 minutes or until they are translucent. Stir in the garlic, cook for another minute and remove from heat. Add the barley (or other grain) to the skillet and stir until combined.
- In a medium bowl whisk together the eggs, cottage cheese, sour cream, dried herb of choice, and salt.
- Combine the barley mixture and cottage cheese mixture in a large bowl, stir until well combined and then turn out into your prepared baking dish. I used a 9×13 Pyrex dish. You can also use something smaller.
- Sprinkle with 2/3 of the Parmesan cheese, cover with foil and place in oven for 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake for another 20 or 30 minutes more or hot throughout and golden along the edges.
- Serve hot.
I had mine with some roast chicken.