Guinness, Bacon, Cheddar, and Barley Risotto 

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Weeknight Comfort = Bacon, Cheddar, Barley, & Guinness Risotto. Yes Please! Cheesy, Soul-Warming, Pantry-Friendly, Malt-Kissed Happiness. This recipe takes advantage of cost-effective, easy to source ingredients with an extra kiss or Irish goodness. Guaranteed to Please. Recipe Link In Profile. Slainte, friends. Stay healthy and safe. #ad 

Guinness, Bacon, Cheddar, and Barley Risotto 

Makes 4 to 6 servings 

8 rashers of smoked bacon, thinly chopped 

2 tablespoons olive oil 

1 large Spanish onion, finely diced 

3 celery stalks, finely diced 

4 garlic cloves, minced 

½ cup Guinness Draught 

1 ¼ cups pearl barley 

8 cups chicken stock 

2 tablespoons butter 

1 cup aged cheddar cheese, grated on a microplane  

¼ cup finely diced green onions 

Sea salt and cracked black pepper 

  1. Pour the chicken stock in a large saucepan and bring to a gentle simmer over medium-low heat. 
  2. Meanwhile, in a large high-sided skillet fry the bacon until crispy and golden brown. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon, then remove half of the bacon fat. Pour in 2 tablespoons of olive oil, then add the onion and celery, and season with a pinch of sea salt. Cook, stirring often, until the veggies have softened (about 5 – 7 minutes). Stir in the garlic and cook for 30 seconds. 
  3. Stir in the barley and continue cooking, stirring constantly, for 3 minutes until the grains are well coated in oil and slightly toasted. 
  4. Pour in the Guinness Draught and continue stirring as the barley quickly absorbs the liquid. Begin adding the chicken stock, about ½ cup at a time, stirring constantly to allow each addition of liquid to absorb into the barley before adding more. Keep a close watch so the barley never becomes dry. It takes all of your attention. And it’s completely worth it. 
  5. Continue stirring in the stock until the risotto is tender and super creamy. It will take about 45 minutes, but give the barley a taste to know for sure when it’s done. 
  6. Stir in the butter, cheese, and green onions, the reserved crispy bacon, then hit the risotto with a generous pinch of cracked black pepper. Serve immediately. Delicious! 

 

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