Barley and vegetable ragout

Ingredients

  • 1¾ cups low-sodium vegetable or chicken broth
  • ¾ cup barley, rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced (about 1½ cups)
  • 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • ½ pound mushrooms, quartered
  • ½ teaspoon salt (optional)
  • 4 cups vegetables cut in ½ inch cubes (e.g., carrots, parsnips, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, yams)
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 15-ounce can tomatoes with mild green chilies, undrained
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, sliced into strips
  • ½ cup flat leaf parsley, coarsely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs: rosemary, thyme, sage
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Directions

  1. In a medium saucepan, bring broth to a boil. Add barley, cover pan and reduce heat to low for 30 to 40 minutes until barley is tender and broth is absorbed.
  2. Meanwhile, prepare all vegetables. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium to high heat. Sauté onion, garlic, salt and mushrooms until onion is soft, about three minutes. Add root vegetables and pepper, sauté for another five minutes, stirring frequently to prevent burning.
  3. Add tomatoes, reduce heat to medium or low, cover and simmer until vegetables are tender, about eight to 10 minutes.
  4. Add bell pepper, parsley and barley to skillet and mix well. Cover and simmer until heated through. Combine herbs with cheese, garnish and serve.

Nutrition information

Per serving with salt: 258 calories, 14g protein, 44g carbohydrate, 7g fat, 2g saturated fat, 4g monounsaturated fat, 4mg cholesterol, 9g fiber, 460 mg sodium (without salt: 260mg sodium)

Notes

Dried herbs work equally well in this recipe. Add them with the tomatoes in step 3. Cooking vegetables in a large skillet instead of a pot allows them to caramelize (turn brown), which boosts flavor.