Planning lunches that are actually exciting can be a challenge. I remember doing it for ten years when I worked in my 9-5. And if I didn't have leftovers or something stashed in my freezer, I would struggle with what to bring to work. These mushroom barley bowls are perfect for a work lunch. You can easily prep the barley and eggs ahead to save time. And it can be reheated or served cold or room temperature easily. If you don't want to do a poached egg, do a medium boiled egg instead. And feel free to add in two eggs for more protein.
This barley bowl is so versatile, so feel free to change it up to suit your needs. Here are some reasons why I think you'll love them.
Here are all of the ingredients you'll need to make this mushroom barley bowl. See substitutions for swaps and options.
There are two main types of barley, pearl barley and pot barley. Feel free to use whichever you prefer.
This mushroom barley bowl is fairly easy to make, it just has a few components to it. But while the barley is cooking and resting afterwards, you can prep all the other ingredients.
The first thing to do is cook the barley. The timing of this will of course depend on which type of barley you're using.
Combine the pearl barley and water (or broth) in a medium sized pot. Add a good pinch of kosher salt. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and then reduce the heat, cover and cook for 25 to 35 minutes, until cooked through and fluffy. Start checking around 25 minutes to see if its cooked through. It will likely take between 30 and 35 minutes. Once cooked, turn off the heat, stir and cover and remove from the heat. Let it stand for five to ten minutes.
Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add 1 tbsp of oil and once hot, add the shallots. Cook until softened and just starting to brown, about five minutes, reducing the heat if needed to avoid burning. Remove the shallots and set aside on a plate and season with salt and pepper.
In the same skillet, add the remaining oil over medium heat. Add in the mushrooms (in batches) and cook until browned and crispy on one side, then flip and continue cooking until browned on the other side, about six to eight minutes. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.
Everyone has their own method or tips for poaching eggs. I personally love making poached eggs at home and this is the way I do it.
In a medium sized pot, bring water to a boil for the eggs and then reduce the heat so the water is just simmering. Adding a splash of vinegar is an option, but not something I personally do.
Carefully crack the eggs in a short drinking glass (or a mug) or small ramekin. You can crack the egg into a small sieve which helps to remove excess whites from the egg that would otherwise float around and just won't make the poached egg look as nice, it's not necessary though.
Swirl the water in the pot with a wooden spoon to create a vortex (nothing crazy though, just a gentle swirl). Carefully pour the egg from the mug/glass or ramekin into the water and cook for three to four minutes (depending on preference), until the whites are set and the yolk is still runny.
Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside on a paper towel lined plate and repeat with the remaining eggs.
If you feel comfortable doing more than one poached egg at a time, by all means, go for it.
Fluff the barley and add a drizzle of olive oil, half the lemon juice and zest. Season with more salt and pepper if needed.
Divide the barley into bowls and top with the shallot, mushrooms and eggs.
Add the arugula and squeeze on more lemon juice and a drizzle of olive oil over top. Top with goat cheese and nanami togarashi if using. Enjoy!
Are you ready to make this? Let's get to it!
If you make these Mushroom Barley Bowls please share with me, by tagging me on Instagram or leave a comment and/or review below. I truly love seeing and hearing from you!
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These mushroom and poached egg barley bowls are perfect to meal prep for lunch or dinner.
The barley and eggs can be prepped ahead to save time.
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