Chorizo, Butternut and Pearl Barley Recipe

Chorizo, butternut and pearl barley
I saw this recipe from Rachel Allen in the Sunday Times Magazine and have adapted it to suit us. Her original version is no doubt super, but I wanted a one-pot meal. She roasts the butternut in the oven first, something that is always good, so give it a try that way too.

Chorizo is a type of salami with lots of paprika so it adds a lovely colour to any dish. It also has quite a bit of fat, so don’t need to add any extra oil to the pan.

I only had 125grams of pearl barley to hand when I made this and it was enough for us, but it could definitely have handled 125g more. To be sure that 4 hungry people have enough to eat, use 250g. I bought mine in Germany and found the grains to be smaller than what I remember from Africa (and in Rachel’s photo they looked bigger than mine too). I think a bigger grain would be better, so see if you can find it in different sizes and go for big!

I added sundried tomatoes because a) I like them, b) I think they add extra flavour, and c) I have a lot of them! But should you not have any, then just leave them out.

Serves 4
1-2 onions, roughly chopped
1 ring cured chorizo (about 250g), peeled and chopped into ½ cm half-moons
125-250g pearl barley
1 litre stock, chicken or vegetable
4-8 sundried tomatoes, chopped (optional)
1 butternut, medium sized, peeled and cut into 5cm cubes
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Put the onion and chorizo into a dry pan and sauté on a low heat till the fat has rendered from the meat and the onions are softened.
2. Add the pearl barley, stock and sundried tomatoes and simmer for about 10 minutes. Add the butternut and simmer, covered for a further 20 minutes.
3. Check to see if the butternut and pearl barley are cooked. Most of the liquid should have been absorbed. If not, remove the lid, turn up the heat slightly and cook off any liquid.
4. Have a taste to see if it needs salt and pepper. Some chorizos are more heavily spiced than others so check first.
5. And now that’s left to do is enjoy! Bon appetite!

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