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Photo of Beef and mixed mushroom barley risotto by WW

Beef and mixed mushroom barley risotto

Total Time
2 hr 15 min
20 min
1 hr 55 min
This risotto may take a long time to cook however it is well worth it. With flavours of Swiss brown, oyster and enoki mushrooms, this risotto is jam packed with flavour.


Brown onion

2 medium

Fresh bay leaf

1 whole

Fresh thyme

3 tsp, sprigs, plus 1 tsp leaves

Beef stock cube

1 individual

Beef chuck steak, raw

400 g, (Buy 500g)

Olive oil

1 tbs


1 clove(s), crushed

Pearl barley

1 cup(s), (200g)

Red wine

60 ml, (1/4 cup)


400 g, mixed, chopped (see note)

Baby spinach

80 g

Shaved parmesan cheese

¼ cup(s), (20g)


  1. Coarsely chop 1 onion. Place chopped onion, bay leaf, thyme sprigs, stock cube and 1.5 litres (6 cups) water in a large saucepan and bring to the boil. Add beef. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 1 hour or until beef is tender.
  2. Using a slotted spoon, remove beef from cooking liquid. Using 2 forks, coarsely shred beef. Strain cooking liquid through a muslin-lined sieve or colander into a medium heatproof bowl. Discard solids. Cover stock mixture to keep warm.
  3. Finely chop remaining onion. Heat half the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Cook onion, stirring, for 5 minutes or until softened. Add garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add barley and thyme leaves and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes.
  4. Add wine and cook, stirring, for 1 minute or until wine has absorbed. Add stock mixture, a ladle (½ cup/125ml) at a time, stirring constantly, for 40–45 minutes or until barley is tender. (Add hot water if liquid is absorbed before barley is tender).
  5. Meanwhile, heat remaining oil in a large non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat. Cook mushrooms, stirring, for 5 minutes or until softened. Add mushrooms, spinach and shredded beef to risotto. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute or until spinach has wilted. Serve topped with parmesan.


SERVING SUGGESTION: Salad of baby spinach leaves and grape tomatoes, drizzled with balsamic vinegar. TIPS: We used a mixture of Swiss brown, oyster and enoki mushrooms but you can use any combination you prefer. Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 days. Reheat in the microwave, adding a little water to loosen the risotto if it’s too thick.