Barley–Pine Nut Casserole
- 1 cup uncooked pearl barley
- 1½ cups vegetable juice
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 2 medium stalks celery sliced (1 cup)
- 1 medium bell pepper chopped (1 cup)
- 1 medium onion chopped (1⁄2 cup)
- 1 can 14 oz vegetable broth
- 4 medium green onions sliced (1⁄4 cup)
- ¼ ⁄4 cup pine nuts toasted*
- In 3- to 4-quart slow cooker, mix all ingredients except green onions and nuts.
- Cover; cook on Low heat setting 6 to 8 hours.
- Before serving, stir in green onions and pine nuts.
- *To toast pine nuts, bake uncovered in ungreased shallow pan in 350°F oven 6 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until golden brown.
- Or cook in ungreased heavy skillet over medium-low heat 5 to 7 minutes, stirring frequently until browning begins, then stirring constantly until golden brown.
Barley is the perfect grain to cook in the slow cooker. The long, slow cooking makes the barley tender but not gummy. Serve this casserole with steamed edamame for a great dish with extra protein.