This recipe is from the talented Gísli Matt, chef and owner of acclaimed Slippurinn in Vestmannaeyjar (the Westman Islands), Iceland. It is featured in his new cookbook Slippurinn - Recipes and Stories from Iceland, which can be purchased through Gísli Matt directly, or through Phaidon.
BARLEY-OTTO, THE CHEESE RISOTTO OF THE NORTH:
- 400 ml water
- 100 g whole oats
- Vegetable, or other neutral oil for frying
- 300 g pearl barley
- 100 g sunflower seeds
- 3 large shallots, chopped
- 5 garlic cloves, chopped
- 180 ml sour whey (or white wine)
- 120 ml cream
- 60 g butter
- 1.3 L vegetable stock
- 210 g aged cheese, grated
- Saltverk Arctic Thyme Salt, to taste
- Black pepper, to taste
- 35 g nutritional yeast powder
Start by cooking the whole oats by bringing the water to boil in a small pot over high heat. Stir in the oats and reduce the heat to low. Let it simmer for approximately 40 minutes until the oats have a soft texture. Strain off the excess liquid and save it for later use.
For the barley, start with a large, wide pot over medium heat, add a bit of oil, shallots and garlic cloves and cook for 2 minutes while stirring. Then add the raw barley and toast it lightly. Add sour whey and and reduce until almost fully evaporated, then add 300 ml of the vegetable stock and reduce while stirring until it is absorbed by the barley.
Continue adding vegetable stock in this manner until the barley is almost cooked through. Add the cream, the sunflower seeds and the cooked whole oats and cook down until the cream has reduced fully into the barley. Add the butter and grated aged cheese and season with sea salt and pepper. Serve immediately in a bowl and dust with the nutritional yeast.
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