Barley & Walnut Risotto with Basil Oil
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Barley & Walnut Risotto with Basil Oil

Prep Time: |
Cook Time: |
Makes: 8 cups (2 L) 8 servings


  • Basil Oil

  • 1 cup 250 mL fresh basil leaves
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/4 tsp 1 mL salt
  • 1/4 cup 50 mL

    Vegetable Oil

    Crisco® Vegetable or Canola Oil
  • Risotto

  • 8 cups 2 L chicken or vegetable stock, hot
  • 2 tbsp 30 mL Crisco Vegetable or Canola Oil
  • 1 cup 250 mL white button or brown mushrooms (cremini), sliced
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 cups 500 mL pearl barley, rinsed
  • 1/2 cup 125 mL grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup 125 mL toasted walnuts, chopped
  • 1 tsp 5 mL salt
  • 1/4 tsp 1 mL pepper


  1. Basil Oil: Place basil and salt in food processor. Combine with on/off pulses until finely chopped. Add oil and puree. Reserve.
  2. Risotto: Bring stock to a boil in a saucepan. Heat oil in a large saucepan on medium heat. Add mushrooms, onion and garlic and cook gently until tender, about 5 minutes. Add barley, stir to coat well with oil. Add 1 cup (250 mL) boiling stock, simmer, stirring often until liquid is absorbed. Continue adding hot stock 1 cup (250 mL) at a time, allowing stock to be absorbed before adding more, stirring frequently until barley is tender, but firm to the bite, about 45 minutes. Stir in cheese, walnuts and reserved basil oil. Taste and adjust salt and pepper if necessary. Serve immediately. 


  • There are two different kinds of barley: pot barley and pearl barley. The pearl barley is polished more than pot barley making it smaller in size so it cooks faster than pot barley.