Easy leek and kale pearl barley with crispy lardons

Easy leek and kale pearl barley with crispy lardons
  • Serves icon Serves 4
  • Time icon Hands-on 30 min, simmering 15 min

Think risotto, then crank things up a notch – this hearty combination of kale, leeks and pearl barley topped with smoked bacon is a filling midweek recipe that’s full of texture.

Nutrition: per serving

Calories
468kcals
Fat
20g (6.9g saturated)
Protein
14.9g
Carbohydrates
54.5g (3.4g sugars)
Fibre
5.5g
Salt
1.9g
Calories
468kcals
Fat
20g (6.9g saturated)
Protein
14.9g
Carbohydrates
54.5g (3.4g sugars)
Fibre
5.5g
Salt
1.9g

Ingredients

  • Olive oil for frying
  • 3 leeks, finely sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 150g British free-range smoked bacon lardons
  • 250g pearl barley
  • 1 litre good quality chicken stock
  • 200g chopped curly kale
  • 3 tbsp crème fraîche
  • Juice 1 lemon
  • Finely chopped fresh parsley (optional)

Method

  1. Heat a glug of oil in a large, deep frying pan and add the leeks. Fry for 3-4 minutes, then add the garlic, half the bacon lardons and the pearl barley. Gently fry for a further 2-3 minutes, then slowly start to add the chicken stock.
  2. As the pearl barley absorbs the stock, keep slowly adding more. When three quarters of the stock has been added (this will take 15-20 minutes), pour in the remaining stock, then gently simmer until the barley is cooked (another 10-15 minutes).
  3. Meanwhile, in a small frying pan, heat a little oil and the remaining lardons, fry until crisp, then set aside. Stir the kale into the barley in batches and simmer for a few minutes.
  4. Season to taste, stir in the crème fraîche and lemon juice, then serve sprinkled with parsley if you wish.

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