Try this recipe for mushroom pearl barley risotto with roasted carrots, then check out our classic mushroom risotto, spelt and mushroom risotto, vegetable risotto and more risotto recipes.


  • 10g dried wild mushrooms or porcini
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large leek, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 300g pearl barley, rinsed
  • 320g baby carrots, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 2 sprigs rosemary, chopped
  • 320g chestnut mushrooms, sliced
  • 3 tbsp crème fraîche
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 25g parmesan (or vegetarian alternative), finely grated


  • STEP 1

    Put the dried mushrooms in a large heatproof jug and cover with 1.25 litres of just-boiled water. Set aside to soak.

  • STEP 2

    Heat ½ tbsp of olive oil in a frying pan over a medium heat and fry the leeks for 10 minutes until tender. Add the garlic and fry for a minute more. Stir in the barley, then add the rehydrated mushrooms along with most of their soaking liquid (leave the last dregs in the jug, as this may contain grit). Bring to a simmer and cook for 1 hour, stirring frequently and covering halfway through, until the barley is tender with a slight bite (it shouldn’t be firm).

  • STEP 3

    Meanwhile, heat the oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Tip the carrots onto a roasting tray, drizzle over 1 tbsp of oil and scatter with some seasoning and the rosemary. Toss well. Roast for 30-35 minutes or until the carrots are tender throughout.

  • STEP 4

    Heat the remaining ½ tbsp of oil in a deep frying pan or shallow pan over a medium heat and fry the chestnut mushrooms with a pinch of salt for 10 minutes until lightly golden and tender. Scrape out onto a plate.

  • STEP 5

    When the barley is tender, stir the mushrooms, crème fraîche and some of the lemon zest and cheese through the risotto. Taste for seasoning. Top with the roasted carrots and any rosemary oil left in the tray. Scatter with the remaining lemon zest, cheese and a crack of black pepper to serve.

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Anna Glover profile
Anna GloverSenior food editor

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