Barley Pie

I really do not know how I came by this concoction. I typed this up about six years ago, copying it from a cutting that had been sitting around for years before that, so whereas I would like to thank whoever made it up in the first place I now have no idea who that might have been. But then again, I suspect that whoever it was had adapted it from an even earlier piece, so it hardly matters now. It is a useful one pot meal that can be prepared hours or days in advance. It calls for diced ham and a certain combination of vegetables, but this is a guide only. Be creative!



¼ cup pearl barley.

1 cup orange lentils.

¼ cup olive oil.

1 ½ cups mushrooms, diced.

100mm celery, finely chopped.

1 bay leaf.

3 cloves garlic, crushed.

Salt to taste.

1 tblsp curry powder or to taste.

2 tblsp plain flour.

1 160ml can coconut milk.

1 400g can diced tomatoes.

1 cup sliced green beans.

1 cup diced ham.

3 tblsp rubbed origanum.

1 tblsp soy sauce.

1 tblsp balsamic vinegar.

Mashed potato for topping.



Place the barley and lentils in a bowl, cover with the water and leave overnight. Drain the barley mix and set aside. Heat the oil in a sauté pan over a hot flame and quickly sauté the mushroom, celery, bay leaf and garlic. Add the barley and lentils. Stir through until evenly mixed then add the salt, curry powder and the flour. Stir to mix.

Add the coconut milk and diced tomatoes, stir through, bring to the boil then reduce the heat to a simmer and cook until the barley and lentils are tender [probably 12-15 minutes]. Preheat the oven to 200°C.

Stir the vegetables, herbs, ham, soy sauce and vinegar through. Cook for another minute or so then pour the mixture into a casserole dish, top with the mashed potatoes and place in the oven for 30-40 minutes or until the mash has turned golden.


Serve with: A fresh green salad.


Serves: 4. I made this as two casseroles, with half the mixture in each and each topped with half the mashed potatoes. I baked one immediately, and covered the other with cling film and put it in the fridge. We had it two nights later.

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