Spring Barley Risotto with Mascarpone

Recipe By Masterchef Singapore Finalist Gen Lee
  • 1 small onion, small dice
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 cup/200g pearl barley
  • Handful of picked thyme leaves
  • 5 cup (1250ml) vegetable stock, hot
  • 200g of asparagus chopped into rounds
  • 180g of frozen peas (defrosted)
  • Splash of white wine
  • 3 tbsp mascarpone
  • ½ cup Freshly grated parmigiano reggiano (plus more to sprinkle on top)
  • zest of 1 lemon, and some juice
  • Handful of chopped fresh mint
  • Toast the pearl barley on a skillet till its slightly toasty and nutty, set aside.
  1. In a shallow pot, saute onion and garlic over medium heat till translucent.
  2. Add the barley and thyme and toast for 2 mins.
  3. Add white wine and cook till dry, add hot vegetable stock a ladle at a time till all has been absorbed by the barley, stirring constantly. You may use less or more stock, the barley should be cooked till al dente, it will take around 20-25 mins.
  4. Add the peas and asparagus, season with salt and pepper and stir in the grated parmigiano. Simmer for 2-3 mins or till the vegetables are cooked to a bright green.
  5. Fold through the mascarpone, lemon zest and a squeeze of juice, season to taste.
  6. Serve with a sprinkle of mint and grating of parmigiano.