I have been working on this recipe for a while and think that I finally may be getting somewhere. I watch Andreas Viestad make a Barley Risotto on his show once and have tried a couple different variations and all were ok but this one really seems to be the complete package.
In recent posts I have done a few different things with ducks. I made a few different types of duck sausage several weeks ago and then just a couple weeks back I broke down some ducks and made some stock. So the final version of this dish really created itself based on what I had in the freezer. In past versions of the Barley Risotto I had used white wine and chicken stock, but because the sausages in this dish were made with a red wine I thought why not try red wine instead of white and because I had it available I thought why not use duck stock. It turned out just the way I imagined this dish from the beginning. It only took the right circumstances and about 5 tries to get it right.
The other part of this dish that makes me so happy is the majority of this dish was made by me using ducks that I killed or ducks that were raised for me by Caerwyn Farm. The sausages were home made the stock was home made even the rosemary was grown in my herb garden and dried in the fall. If you get a chance you should give it a try. It is very satisfying.
Barley Risotto with Duck Sausage
1 1/2 cups pearl barley
1/2 cup diced onion
3 tablespoons olive oil
6 cups duck stock (at a low simmer)
1/2 cup red wine
1 teaspoon rosemary
1 pound duck sausages cooked and cut into coins
Heat the olive oil until just smoking and add the onions, saute for a few minutes until soft and add the barley. cook for several minutes making sure the barley is coated with oil. Add the red wine and stir until just about absorbed add the duck stock a cup at a time never letting the barley get dry and stirring frequently. when the barley is tender to the bite add the rosemary and the duck sausage. I also added a couple of tablespoons of butter at the end.
Make sure you have your stock on the stove warming the whole time.