This dish is definitely a labor of love. Much like a traditional risotto, you need to spend time at the stove, stirring, adding liquid, stirring… But the results are so worth it – it’s rich and filling and well, my perfect comfort food. The bonus is that this seriously makes a huge pot of food – enough for lunch leftovers. There are days where I start to despise the leftovers I bring for lunch, but I ate this risotto for a week straight and never got sick of it.
I can’t wait to make it again – maybe this time with another type of mushroom!
Mushroom Barley and Wild Rice Risotto
6 cups low-sodium beef broth
3 cups water
8 slices bacon, chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, minced
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound cremini mushrooms, sliced
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups uncooked pearl barley
1/2 cup wild rice
1/3 cup dry red wine
1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes, re-hydrated and chopped
2 teaspoons low-sodium soy sauce
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 – 10 ounce package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
- Bring stock and water to a simmer in a large saucepan. Cover and keep warm over low heat – do not boil.
- Meanwhile, heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add bacon and cook until crisp. Remove bacon to a plate and set aside; reserve 2 teaspoons of bacon drippings in pan and discard the rest.
- Return the Dutch oven to medium-high heat and add in onion, thyme and garlic. Saute for 3 minutes or until onions are tender. Add in mushrooms and salt and cook for 10 minutes or until browned, stirring occasionally. Stir in tomatoes, soy sauce, pepper, spinach, and cooked bacon. Cook until heated through. Serve immediately.
- Stir in barley and wild rice. Cook, stirring frequently, for 1 minute. Add in wine and cook until liquid is absorbed, about 2 – 3 minutes. Reduce heat to medium. Stir in 2 cups of the broth mixture and cook until liquid is absorbed, stirring frequently. Continue with the remaining broth mixture: add in 1 cup at a time, stirring frequently. Make sure liquid is absorbed before adding the next cup.
recipe adapted from Prevention RD