Tomato Barley Risotto


Well, technically, it is not a risotto. I will give you that. Neither it has rice, nor it is sprinkled with cheese. Yet, it is as creamy and flavorful. The ancient grain barley, is full of complex carbohydrates, such as starch and cellulose. Cellulose is an important dietary fiber and starch makes it a power-pack of energy. A moderate portion goes a long way. While for a meal for two, I usually take 1.5 or 2 cups of rice, only a cupful would suffice with the barley. As far as you are not gluten-intolerant, barley makes a good addition to your repertoire of staple grains.

Today’s barley risotto is, in fact, a no-recipe kind. I simply, put all the ingredients together, pressure-cooked for 15 minutes…and it is ready to be served. Perfect as a quick lunch on weekdays.



1 cup pearl barley
2 cups of tomato puree
1-2 bay leaves
1 piece of cinnamon
3-4 cloves/ black pepper
1-2 dried red chilli pepper
1 teaspoon dried mint
1 teaspoon dried basel
1 teaspoon sumac powder (optional)
Salt to taste
A dash of olive oil
1 cup vegetable stock or water


  1. Simply mix everything together in a pot/ pressure cooker. Cover/ apply pressure. Cook till barley is done (15 minutes in pressure cooker, a bit more in covered pot).
  2. Enjoy with a side of any vegetable stir fry!



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