Butternut squash and pearl barley risotto

It’s a little bit late in the winter to publish a butternut squash recipe, but with the cold weather picking up again in England, there’s nothing I’d like more in the evening than a warm, comforting bowl of butternut squash and pearl barley risotto. The way I cook it, most of the butternut squash melts into the stock, coating the pearl barley in a delicious creamy coating, making this dish oh so smooth. As for the sage, it goes beautifully well with the squash, bringing the whole dish together.

And just so I use the entire vegetable, I keep the butternut squash seeds and roast them with salt, using them both to garnish the dish and as an afternoon snack with my tea!

Serves 4

Ingredients:

Coconut oil

1 onion, chopped

2 garlic cloves

2 celery sticks, chopped

1 carrot, chopped

1 butternut squash, peeled, seeds removed and cut into cubes

250g pearl barley, rinsed

1 litre vegetable stock

Sage

Salt

Pepper

1. Over a medium heat, melt some coconut oil in a large pot. Add chopped onion, celery, carrot and butternut squash and cook for ten minutes, stirring occasionally.

2. Add garlic and cook for a further two minutes.

3. Add the pearl barley, some sage and a ladleful of stock,. Stir well, until absorbed, then add another. Repeat the process until the pearl barley is tender (about 30 minutes).

4. Once pearl barley is cooked, salt and pepper to taste.

5. Serve with some sage or roasted butternut squash seeds to garnish.

6. Enjoy!

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