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Barley Risotto with Garlic Spinach and Mascarpone

March 2010
Barley Risotto with Garlic Spinach and Mascarpone

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Makes: 6 servings

Prep: 10 mins

Cook: 40 mins

Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 pinch crushed red pepper
  • 1 1/4 cups pearl barley
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 1 5 ounce bag  spinach
  • 1/2 cup mascarpone cheese
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese, plus shavings for sprinkling
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel, plus thinly sliced peel for sprinkling
Directions
  1. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the shallot, garlic and crushed red pepper; cook until the shallot is softened, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the barley and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the wine and cook until most of the liquid is absorbed, about 2 minutes. Add the chicken broth, 1 1/2 cups water and 1/2 teaspoon each salt and black pepper; bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, covered, until the grains are tender but chewy, about 30 minutes.
  2. Stir in the spinach, mascarpone, grated parmigiano-reggiano and grated lemon peel; season with salt and black pepper. Serve immediately, sprinkled with the thinly sliced lemon peel and shaved parmigiano-reggiano.
Tip Make It:
  • Swap in barley, farro or quinoa for rice when making risotto.