Spinach and Anster Cheese Barlotto

A delicious risotto made with pearl barley. This recipe can be adapted to include whatever veg you have to hand. Roasted squash or pumpkin is particularly nice for autumnal warmth.


100g butter
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
250g barley
1.2 litres hot vegetable stock
1 bunch of parsley
2 eggs, soft boiled
1 bag of spinach leaves
4 tablespoons of oil
100g Anster cheese, diced


Melt 50g of the butter in a frying pan over a low heat and gently fry the garlic, onion and leek until softened

Add the barley, stir well and cook for 2-3 minutes until it is buttery and glazed.

Start to add the hot vegetable stock to the mixture two  ladles at a time and stir constantly. Continue to do this for 5 minutes adding more stock as the barley absorbs the liquid in the pan and thickens.

After 20 minutes add the spinach and stir. Remove from the heat, stir in the remaining butter and cheese and stir vigorously. The barlotto should be a rich creamy consistency. ( If it is a little too thick add a bit more stock.)

Peel the eggs and cut them in half. Pour the barlotto onto warmed plates and garnish with the eggs. Sprinkle with parsley, and drizzle with the oil. Add a good twist of black pepper and enjoy!