As I opened my grandmother’s cook book I could feel the old yellow pages under my fingertips. Trying to recognize the faded out letters, I scribbled down the ingredients. Her recipes were always the same, her handwriting on any piece of paper she could find, just a few words, nothing specific like the recipes were a secrete. It felt like I was uncovering a story in between the lines, and there were so many recipes.
One of the recipes hidden in the pages was a recipe for bean and barley stew. As a kid I wasn’t a big fan, I can remember my mom laughing about it and teasing that she’ll make it for lunch even though we had it two days prior to that, it’s later that I found appreciation and love for stews. It’s amazing how you can make a stew from any vegetable or combination of vegetables and it will be tasty and most importantly healthy.
Bean & barley stew is delicious, it is a traditional dish and I hope that taking a spoonful of this stew will remind you of your family as it did for me. Enjoy!
Preparation: 15 min Cook time: 45 min Servings: 4
- 800 g can red beans
- 500 g ham hock
- 200 g barley
- 2 onions, chopped
- 1 carrot, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- 1 leaf laurel
- 1 tsp red paprika
- 1 tsp red chili
- 2 tbsp pork fat/ oil
- salt & pepper to taste
- In a medium cooking pot boil the slightly salted water and cook the barley until soft.
- In a second pot cook the ham hock until soft, dry it and keep the water.
- In a third large pot heat the fat and add chopped onion, carrot and crushed garlic. Let it simmer until light brown. Add 1/2 of water from cooking the ham. Stir in red paprika, chili and the cooked barley. Let it cook for 10 to 15 min.
- Add meat, beans, the rest of the water if needed, laurel, salt and pepper. Let it cook for another 15 to 20 min. Serve warm.