Meatless Monday: Mushroom, leek, butternut squash, and barley bake

This bake could easily be made with any grain or veggies. It's also good cold and makes a delicious lunch the next day.

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    Mushroom, leek, butternut squash and barley Bake
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When I came across this recipe in my usual mishmash of blog reading I immediately sent it around to my friends – this looks like us.

YES! Everyone agreed. So we decided to test it out and see if this mushroom leek and barley bake is as delicious as it looks. (Spolier alert: it is.)

After a hunger-inducing day of yoga and shopping, we stopped by the ridiculously fancy Whole Foods in Foggy Bottom to buy ingredients: barley, leeks, mushrooms, and Parmesan. It really is that simple! Back in my kitchen we started sautéing and roasting (the original recipe doesn’t call for squash, but roasted squash makes everything better). And I learned something new: You don’t have to peel butternut squash! You can roast or sauté it with the skin on and it’s fine. It’s even better than fine, it’s good for you.

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Because we added the squash we had extra filling on the side. No problems with that! This bake is awesome, and could easily be made with any grain or veggies. It's also good cold and made a delicious lunch for me on Monday. Total win. 

Mushroom, Leek, Butternut Squash & Barley Bake
Recipe adapted from So Good and Tasty)
Serves 4-6  

1 tablespoons olive oil
4-6 ounces mushrooms, chopped
1 leek, white and light green parts only, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
2 cups cooked pearl barley (about 1/2 cup dried cooked in 1 1/2 cups water)
2 cups cubed butternut squash
1/2 cup Parmesan, divided
4 eggs
Salt and pepper
 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and grease a 1-3/4 qt. baking dish. (We used a 9-inch cake pan.)

Prepare the barley: Cover 1/2 cup of pearl barley with 1-1/2  cups of water and simmer for 30-40 minutes, then fluff with a fork.

Spray a baking dish and toss the butternut squash with salt and pepper. Roast for about 25 minutes, or until tender.

In a large frying pan heat the oil over medium heat. Add in the mushrooms and a pinch of salt, cooking for about 3 minutes or until just beginning to soften. Stir in the leeks, cook another 2 minutes, then add in the garlic. Continue cooking until everything is softened and the mushrooms are a nice brown color, about another 3 minutes. Mix in roasted squash. Let cool slightly.

Place the barley in a large bowl. Stir in the mushroom mixture and half the Parmesan.

In a small bowl, whisk the eggs and salt. Fold the eggs into the barley mixture, then pour into your prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with the last half of the Parmesan. 

Bake for 25-30 minutes or until set. Remove from the oven, cool for 10 minutes, and serve.

For a printable version of this recipe, click here.

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