- 12g dried porcini mushrooms
- 1 butternut squash
- 1 vegetable stock cube
- 750ml boiling water
- 1 leek
- 2 garlic cloves
- A handful of thyme, leaves only
- 200g chard
- 2 tsp olive oil
- Sea salt
- Freshly ground pepper
- 150g pearl barley
- 1 tsp wholegrain mustard
- 3 tbsp soya cream
1. Pop the dried porcini mushrooms into a heatproof measuring jug and cover with boiling water. Leave for 5 mins to soak. While the porcini soak, trim the squash and slice it in half lengthways. Scoop out and discard the seeds. Chop the squash into small 1-2cm chunks.
2. Drain the porcini mushrooms and rinse well under a cold tap. Crumble the stock cube into a jug. Add the rinsed porcini mushrooms. Pour over 750ml boiling water. Stir and leave for 10 mins to infuse and soften.
3. Trim the root and top 3cm off the leek. Rinse well under a cold tap. Slice the leek into thin rounds. Peel the garlic cloves and thinly slice them. Pick the thyme leaves. Strip the chard leaves from their stalks. Thinly slice the stalks (save the leaves for later in the recipe.
4. Pour 2 tsp oil into a large pan and warm to a medium heat. Slide in the leek, garlic and sliced chard stalks. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper, and add the thyme leaves. Fry for 5 mins, stirring often, till slightly softened.
5. Pour in the mushroom stock. Tip in the pearl barley and the chopped squash. Stir in 1 tsp wholegrain mustard. Bring to the boil, then simmer for 25-30 mins, till the squash and barley are tender.
6. Meanwhile, shred the chard leaves. When the veg and barley are tender, add the chard. Stir to wilt it.
7. Stir 3 tbsp soya cream through the stew. Taste and add more salt or pepper if needed. Ladle the stew into a couple of warm bowls and serve.