When you’ve each loved a bowl of Scotch broth, you’ll know that lamb and barley work nicely collectively, key components historically featured in that hearty soup.

When you’ve each loved a bowl of Scotch broth, you’ll know that lamb and barley work nicely collectively, key components historically featured in that hearty soup. The 2 can even share the stage on a dinner plate, as showcased in immediately’s recipes.

For the lamb, I used lamb shanks, that are minimize from the decrease, shin portion of the leg. After searing them, I set them in a casserole and braised them in a tomatoey sauce, flavoured with things like rosemary, garlic, brown sugar, Dijon mustard, smoked paprika and balsamic vinegar — daring tasting components that gave the lamb a really splendid style. Doing that additionally made the meat succulently tender.

About 40 minutes earlier than the lamb was prepared, with all my components minimize and measured, I started making the dish I’d serve with it: barley risotto. It’s a sort of risotto the place nutritious barley replaces the rice usually used to make it. Barley is excessive in fibre and comprises many nutritional vitamins and minerals, equivalent to B nutritional vitamins, iron, calcium and potassium.

To organize the risotto, I cooked some barley with leeks, carrot and garlic in olive oil, after which added some inventory and a little bit of water. The liquid was dropped at a really gradual simmer, and the barley was cooked about half-hour, till the liquid had nearly evaporated and the barley was tender. Salt, pepper, parsley and parmesan cheese have been then combined in, making a comforting dish to serve alongside the lamb shanks.

In grocery shops, you’ll see baggage of pearl and pot barley on the market. Each pearl and pot barley are put by way of a machine that bounces the barley round a grinding wheel that removes the outer inedible hull and polishes the kernel, a course of known as pearling.

Pot barley is pearled for a shorter interval and, in contrast to pearl barley, has a lot of the barley bran nonetheless intact. Due to that bran, it takes a bit longer to cook dinner than pearl barley and has a extra toothsome texture, why it really works nicely in a risotto-style preparation.

With regard to the lamb shanks, you’ll discover them bought recent or frozen at many butcher outlets and grocery shops. When you’re fascinated by shopping for Vancouver Island lamb, to find farms that promote it, go to the Island Farm Recent web site, islandfarmfresh.com, click on on menu and search “lamb.” When you contact the farm, they’ll inform the place you should buy it, whether or not its proper on the farm or an area meals retailer.

The lamb shank and barley risotto recipes serve two, however each could possibly be doubled for those who have been having a meal with a pair different associates or members of the family.

Succulent Braised Lamb Shanks with Barley Risotto

Lamb shanks, braised till very tender in a flavourful sauce, served with toothsome barley risotto. If desired, you possibly can additionally serve the lamb with a inexperienced vegetable, equivalent to sautéed zucchini, or steamed inexperienced beans.

Preparation time: 20 minutes

Cooking time: two to 2 and half hours

Makes: two servings

1 Tbsp olive oil

2 lamb shanks

• salt and freshly floor black pepper, to style

1 (14 oz./398 mL) can diced tomatoes

1/4 cup purple wine (see Eric’s choices)

1 Tbsp tomato paste

1 Tbsp brown sugar

1 Tbsp Dijon mustard

1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce

1 tsp chopped recent rosemary, or pinch or 2 dried

1/2 tsp smoked paprika

1 tsp balsamic vinegar

1 medium garlic clove, minced

1 Tbsp chopped recent parsley

• Barley Risotto (see recipe beneath)

Preheat oven to 325 F. Warmth oil in a heavy skillet set over medium-high warmth. Season lamb shanks with salt and pepper, set within the skillet and sear nicely on all sides. Set the seared shanks in an eight-inch sq. or related sized casserole.

Place diced tomatoes, wine, tomato paste, sugar, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, rosemary, paprika, vinegar and garlic in a bowl and blend nicely to mix. Pour this combination over the lamb. Cowl and bake the lamb for 2 to 2 and half hours, or till the meat could be very tender. Skim any fats from the floor of the sauce surrounding the lamb. Set a lamb shank on every of two plates, high with the sauce, sprinkle with parsley, and serve with the barley risotto.

Eric’s choices: When you don’t wish to use wine, change with beef or rooster inventory.

Barley Risotto

On this dish, nutritious barley replaces the rice usually used when making risotto. It’s a comforting combination flavoured with parmesan cheese that you may serve alongside the braised lamb shanks

Preparation time: 20 minutes

Cooking time: about 35 minutes

Makes: two servings

1 Tbsp olive oil

1/2 cup pot barley

1/3 cup finely diced leek (white and pale inexperienced elements solely)

1/3 cup finely diced carrot

1 medium garlic clove, minced

1 1⁄2 cups rooster inventory

1/2 cup water

1 Tbsp chopped recent parsley

1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese, or to style

• salt and freshly floor black pepper, to style

Warmth oil in a small to medium pot set over medium warmth (my pot was six-inches huge). Add the barley, leeks and carrots and cook dinner and stir till greens soften, about 4 minutes. Combine within the garlic and cook dinner 30 seconds extra. Add the inventory and water and produce to a gradual, gently effervescent simmer (don’t quickly simmer or the liquid will evaporate too rapidly). Modify the warmth as wanted to keep up that simmer, and cook dinner, uncovered, till the barley is tender and nearly all of the liquid has been absorbed, about half-hour. (Add a bit extra inventory if the liquid evaporates earlier than the barley is cooked.) Stir within the parsley, parmesan, salt and pepper, and serve.


Eric Akis is the creator of eight cookbooks. His columns seem within the Life part Wednesday and Sunday.

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