baked barley with pine nuts and cremini mushrooms

super easy and pretty tasty!

2 cups pearl barley (pot barley can be used, but the cooking time would be longer)
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 cup of cremini mushrooms, chopped
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 litre chicken broth
2 cups water
1/2 cup pine nuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Heat butter and olive oil in a skillet over medium heat.
Saute onions, mushrooms and barley in olive oil/butter until onions soften, roughly 5 minutes.
Add onion, mushroom and barley mixture, water and chicken broth to a 2 litre casserole dish. Add a few grinds of black pepper, and stir.

Cover and bake in the oven for 1 hour. In the meantime, toast the pine nuts in the skillet over medium heat until golden. Add the toasted pine nuts to the barley mixture and replace the cover. When an hour has passed, remove the lid and stir, then continue baking uncovered for 20 minutes.

Add more pepper to taste, and sprinkle with romano or parmesan cheese if desired.

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