Sunday, September 29, 2013

Barley and Roasted Squash Pilaf Recipe

Butternut Squash season is here.  This recipe is originally from Food and Wine Magazine but with a few modifications to suit our tastes.  This is a light and hearty meal that is a big hit for potluck gatherings.  It would make an a nice Thanksgiving Entree for vegan or vegetarian guests.

Barley and Roasted Squash Pilaf 
serves 10-12 (side dish)

4 cups peeled, diced (1-inch) butternut squash (1 1/3 pounds)
10-12 small peeled shallots, 1 minced
12 small sage leaves
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 cups pearl barley (14 ounces)
8 cups Turkey Stock or chicken stock or vegetable stock
1 1/2 cups vacuum-packed whole, roasted peeled chestnuts (about 9 ounces), coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons chopped parsley


Preheat the oven to 375°. On a large rimmed baking sheet, toss the diced squash with the whole shallots, sage and 1 tablespoon of the oil and season well with salt and pepper. Roast for 40 minutes, turning once, until the squash and shallots are softened and browned in spots. Crumble the sage. Leave the oven on.  **this may be done a day ahead of time the bring to to room temperature the day you prepare the dish.

In a large enameled cast-iron casserole, melt 1 tablespoon of the butter in the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil. Add the barley and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until golden, 7 minutes. Add the minced shallot and cook until softened. Add the Turkey Stock and bring to a boil. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and bake for 35 minutes, or until the barley is al dente.

Stir the chestnuts and garlic into the barley and simmer over moderate heat until the liquid is thickened and nearly absorbed, about 5 minutes. Stir in the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter, the roasted squash, shallots, sage and the parsley. Season with salt and pepper and serve.

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