Barley Pilaf with Jerusalem Artichokes & Petite Peas

After making brown rice for endless weeks in a row, I decided to experiment with a less mundane, and often over looked grain; barley.

Even though I have made soup with this superfood in the past, I never tried to prepare it as a side dish. Barley is a wholesome, hearty, grain, perfect for these colder months.

I was pleasantly surprised when I accompanied this nutty grain with my favorite winter root vegetable. Jerusalem Artichokes, also known as Sunchokes, are more closely related in their texture to potatoes than to artichokes and whose exterior resembles ginger root.

As much as I love so many of Winter’s  root vegetables, Jerusalem Artichokes are by far my favorite. I’m attracted to their resourcefulness, nutty flavor, and crunchy texture. They can be added to soups for natural creaminess, incorporated into a roasted vegetable medley, or like in this case, simply sauteed with onion and garlic and added to grains.

What you’ll need:

 For the Barley

1 C. Barley

3 C. Water

1 TBSP Butter

1 TSP Salt

For the Vegetables

3 TBSP Olive Oil

1 Medium Yellow Onion

2 Large Garlic Cloves (minced)

5-6 Jerusalem Artichokes (peeled and cubed into bite sized pieces)

1/2 C. Frozen Petite Peas (thawed)

Hefty pinch of dried Thyme

Dash of Coriander

Freshly ground Salt & Pepper, to taste


Method:

In a medium saucepan melt butter, add barley, and cook over medium-to-high heat until lightly browned, and fragrant (3-5 minutes). Add water and salt. Cover and cook over low heat until all the water is absorbed (about 20 minutes).

Meanwhile: heat olive oil in a large skillet, add onions then garlic, saute until soft. Add Jerusalem Artichokes, herbs and spices. Reduce the heat, cover and allow to simmer for 20 minutes, until they are tender (If you don’t want to wait that long, you can par-boil them beforehand).

Mix in thawed peas, and then the cooked barley. Serve warm.

  

Enjoy!!

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