Berrysmith Foundation

Slow Cooker Barley & Fennel Risotto

Serves 6


2 teaspoons fennel seeds 

1 large or 2 small fennel bulbs, cored and finely diced, plus 2 tablespoons chopped fronds 

1 cup pearl barley, or short-grain brown rice 

1 small carrot, finely chopped 

1 large shallot, finely chopped 

2 cloves garlic, minced 

4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth, or "no-chicken" broth 

1 1/8 cups water, divided‚ 

1/3 cups dry white wine 

2 cups fresh French-cut green beans 

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese 

1/3 cups pitted oil-cured black olives, coarsely chopped 

1 tablespoons freshly grated lemon zest 

Freshly ground pepper, to taste


Coat slow cooker with cooking spray. Crush fennel seeds and combine with diced fennel, barley (or rice), carrot, shallot and garlic in the slow cooker. Add broth, 1 cup water and wine, and stir to combine. Cover and cook until the barley (or rice) is tender, but pleasantly chewy, and the risotto is thick and creamy, 2 1/2 to 3 1/2 hours on high or low. 
Shortly before serving, steam green beans. Turn off the slow cooker. Stir the green beans, Parmesan, olives, lemon zest and pepper into the risotto. If it seems dry, heat the remaining 1/2 cup water and stir it into the risotto. Serve sprinkled with the chopped fennel fronds.
Creadit: Recipe from Eating Well:

Slow Cooker Barley & Fennel Risotto

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