Cheesy Barley Gratin

This cheesy gratin could easily be mistaken for another comfort favorite: macaroni and cheese. But beneath the crispy topping, it's perfectly[ cooked barley, not pasta, that's cloaked in a creamy and buttery cheese sauce. Browned onions, garlic and thyme give this decadent side dish deep, rich flavor. Serve it alongside roasted turkey, fried chicken or grilled steak.]

Total Time:
1 hr 35 min
Prep:
10 min
Inactive:
10 min
Cook:
1 hr 15 min

Yield:
8 servings
Level:
Easy

Ingredients
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, plus more for greasing the baking dish
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups pearled barley
  • 6 ounces Gruyere, shredded (about 2 cups)
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan
  • 1 1/2 cups panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped into 1/4-inch pieces (about 2 cups)
  • 2 large cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons finely-chopped fresh thyme
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 cups whole milk
Directions
  • Position an oven rack in the center of the oven and preheat it to 400 degrees F. Lightly grease a 3-quart baking dish with butter and set aside.

  • Fill a small pot with lightly salted water and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the barley and boil until just cooked through but still slightly chewy, about 20 minutes (it will continue to cook in the oven). Drain and rinse.

  • Meanwhile, put 2 tablespoons of butter in a medium microwave-safe bowl and microwave until melted, about 30 seconds. Combine the Gruyere, mozzarella and parmesan in another medium bowl. Add the panko, 1 cup of the cheese mixture and 1/2 teaspoon salt to the bowl with the melted butter. Use your hands to work the butter into the cheese and breadcrumbs. Set aside.

  • Melt the remaining 6 tablespoons of butter in a wide large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onions and a large pinch of salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are lightly browned, 6 to 8 minutes. (The butter will start to foam and brown specks will form, but that is okay; this will add a lot of flavor to the finished dish.) Reduce the heat to medium, add the garlic and thyme and stir constantly until the garlic is just softened, about 1 minute. Stir in the flour and cook, stirring constantly, until a thin paste forms around the onion mixture, about 1 minute. Whisk in the milk and 1 teaspoon each salt and pepper and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce to a simmer, stirring occasionally until the sauce is a thin gravy, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the shredded cheese mixture and cooked barley. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper. Spoon into the greased baking dish. Sprinkle the reserved cheesy breadcrumbs evenly on top of the barley and bake until bubbly and the top is golden brown, about 30 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

  • Copyright 2014 Television Food Network, G.P. All rights reserved or Talent


CATEGORIES:
View All

Cooking Tips
More Recipes and Ideas
Loading review filters...
BROWSE REVIEWS BY KEYWORD
    Reviews

    This recipe is featured in:

    The Best Thanksgiving Side Dishes