Thursday, October 14, 2010

Spinach and Mushroom Barley Pilaf

This recipe was in our local newspaper a few years back.  I just love it as a side dish.  I always thought barley was only used to make soup....until I made this and realize it's a nice alternative to a rice or pasta side dish.

1 cup (250 ml.) water
1/2 cup (125 ml.) quick-cooking barley
1 1/2 tbsp. (20 ml.) canola oil, divided
1 1/2 cups (375 ml.) diced onions
4 oz. (125 g.) sliced mushrooms
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups (500 ml.) loosely packed baby spinach
1 tsp. (5 m.) crushed dried oregano
1/2 tsp. (2.5 ml.) salt

Bring water to a boil in a small saucepan over high heat.  Stir in the barley, reduce heat, cover tightly and simmer 10 - 12 minutes or until tender.  Remove from heat and let stand five minutes.

Meanwhile, heat 1/2 tbsp. canola oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat.  Tilt skillet to coat bottom evenly; add onions and cook six minutes or until richly browned, stirring frequently.  Add mushrooms and cook four minutes or until tender.  Add garlic and cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly.

Remove from heat.  Add spinach, oregano, salt and undrained barley.  Toss well to blend.

Drizzle remaining canola oil evenly over all and toss gently until just coated.

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