Barley Risotto With Blue Cheese And Spinach Recipe

Mar 6, 2013 4:31 pm

Simple, delicious vegetarian risotto recipe for two

Photo: Laura Edwards
Photo: Laura Edwards
This vegetarian risotto recipe uses barley and features two cheeses with spinach.

This recipe was born out of a gentle spring evening with a few fridge ingredients knocking around and the prospect of a meal for one alone at the kitchen table. Sometimes you come up with the best ideas when you’re in your own company. Even though the recipe serves two people, I ended up eating the whole pot.

I used barley because I didn’t have enough risotto in the pantry – feel free to use either, though barley is a far cheaper option. As for blue cheese, use whatever’s available to you – my favorite is Saint Agur. Serve with a bitter salad of escarole or radicchio and a glass of crisp white wine.

Reprinted with permission from Kitchen & Co.

Servings: 2


1 small red onion, sliced
pat of butter
3 handfuls barley
1 glass white wine
1 1/4 cups vegetable stock
2 large handfuls fresh spinach
2 tablespoons cream cheese
1 3/4 ounces blue cheese
juice and zest of 1/2 lemon
1/2 scallion, very finely sliced (optional)
Salt and pepper
  1. In a saucepan, sweat the onion with the butter until soft and golden. Add the barley and stir to coat for a minute.
  2. Pour in the white wine and half of the stock. Keeping the lid off, turn the heat to high and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.
  3. Stir occasionally and gradually add the remaining stock as it is absorbed. Cook until the barley is al dente and the liquid has reduced.
  4. Add the spinach to the pan and fold in with a wooden spoon or fork as soon as it starts to wilt. Quickly introduce the cheeses and stir to melt entirely. Season to taste.
  5. Serve immediately with a little lemon juice and zest, and the scallion if you’re using it.

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Level of Difficulty: 
Prep Time: 
15 minutes
Cooking Time: 
30 minutes
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