This past week, The Dallas Morning News showcased a recipe in their article "Barley Jambalaya an inexpensive, Creole-flavored way to feed a group" that is nutritious and easy to make. The recipe, developed by our own Chef Sarah McKay (long-time volunteer for Operation Frontline: Detroit) replaces sausage and white rice for turkey ham and barley, kicking up the fiber content and reducing the fat content. This recipe is a favorite amongst OFL participants and appears in almost all of our classes. Congratulations, Sarah!Barley Jambalaya Serves 6
- 1 cup pearl barley
- 4 cups water
- 2 whole bay leaves
- 2 medium celery stalks
- 1 medium green bell pepper
- 3 medium onions
- 2 medium cloves garlic
- 4 ounces turkey ham
- 1 tbsp. canola oil
- 2 (14.5 oz) cans diced tomatoes, no salt added
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
- 1 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
- 1 tsp. ground black pepper
- Place barley in a colander and rinse under cold water. Bring water, bay leaves, and barley to a boil in medium saucepan over high heat.
- Reduce heat to low, cover saucepan and cook barley until tender and water is absorbed, about 45 minutes. Place barley in a colander, draining any excess water, and set aside.
- Rinse celery and green pepper. Peel onions and garlic and rinse onions.
- Dice onions, celery, and green pepper and mince garlic.
- Dice turkey ham into 1/4-inch pieces.
- Add oil to large soup pot and heat over medium-high heat.
- Add meat, onions, celery, peppers, and garlic to the soup pot. Mix well.
- Saute 5-10 minutes, scraping bottom of pan periodically.
- Add tomatoes. Turn heat to high and bring to boil.
- Add the 4 spices and stir to combine.
- Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 15 minutes.
- Add cooked barley to the meat and vegetable mixture, stir to combine. Add more liquid if necessary.
- Cook over low heat for an additional 5-10 minutes to blend flavors together.
- Remove bay leaves before serving.
PER SERVING: Calories 363 (16% fat) Fat 7 g (1 g sat) Chol 20 mg
Sodium 1,466 mg Fiber 13 g Carbohydrates 64 g Protein 16 g
- If you only have a limited time to make this recipe, you can use Quick Barley instead of pearl barley. Just add the Quick Barley to the pot after adding the canned tomatoes, using the recommended amount of water on the box (taking into account that there is liquid from the canned tomatoes). You can either finish the jambalaya on the stovetop or put it all into a pan to be baked in the oven for 20 minutes.
- Try ham, chicken, turkey sausage, or shrimp instead of the turkey ham.
- This recipe does well in the freezer if you have leftovers.