Veggie Asparagus Pearl Barley Risotto


  • ½ bunch parsley (40p)
  • 1 handful spinach (30p)
  • 1 tbsp rapeseed oil (25p)
  • 120g pearl barley (40p)
  • 1 litre vegetable stock (£1.25)
  • 1 bay leaf (10p)
  • 1 stick celery, diced (20p)
  • 1 bunch asparagus (£1.80)
  • small handful Hazelnuts, toasted and roughly chopped (30p)


1. Make the parsley and spinach oil by combining the parsley, spinach, oil, water, salt and pepper in a small food processor. You can also do this in a pestle and mortar, or simply chop everything very finely.

2. Place the pearl barley, vegetable stock and bay leaf in a medium sized pan and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to medium so that the stock is simmering, add in the parsley and spinach oil and celery and cook for 15 minutes.

3. Roughly chop half of the asparagus and add it to the pan. Cook for a further 5-10 minutes until the pearl barley is tender. There should be no liquid left, but the risotto should be creamy and light.

4. Place a griddle pan or frying pan on a high heat and griddle the remaining asparagus, turning occasionally so that it is cooked throughout. Remove from the heat and chop the stalk to 1cm pieces, leaving the heads so that they are about 4cm long.

5. Once the asparagus is cooked mix it through the pearl barley and serve. Season with cracked black pepper and sea salt. Top with the hazelnuts.



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