Like most people, our side dishes tend to revolve around the three basics – pasta, rice and potatoes. We love couscous but it’s not in the standard weekly rotation. We always enjoy mixing things up with grains and enjoy quinoa, bulgur and barley on occasion. I’m always looking for ways to include those grains more and have our side dish rotation switched.
This dish was wonderful and we all loved it. My husband even told me that we need to eat barley more often. It has a great flavor, especially when toasted, and the texture is unique and much more interesting than rice or pasta.
I think this dish will definitely be making it into our regular rotation from now on. The flavors blend so well. The apples and raisins mellow as they soak with the barley so that they’re flavorful but not sweet. It was wonderful! Plus, I think with a few modifications and substitutions this would make a really good winter morning breakfast too.
Toasted Barley with Apples & Raisins
- 2 c. barley
- 1 apple, peeled, cored and diced
- 1/4 c. raisins
- 2 T. sliced green onions
- 1/4 t. each cinnamon, allspice, salt and pepper
- 2 c. chicken stock
1. Add barley to a large skillet and toast over medium heat, stirring often, until lightly golden brown.
2. Stir in apples, raisins, green onions and seasonings. Add chicken stock. Bring to a boil.
3. Cover, reduce heat and simmer about 25 minutes, until liquid is absorbed and barley is tender.