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    Beer, bacon & barley hotpot

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    Beer, bacon & barley hotpot

    • Preparation time: 10 minutes
    • Cooking time: 50 minutes
    • Total time: 1 hour

    Serves: 2

    Ingredients

    6 rashers No.1 Free Range Unsmoked Streaky Bacon, cut into 3cm strips
    1 tbsp olive oil
    200g frozen soffritto
    250g butternut squash, peeled, deseeded and cut into 3cm cubes
    1 tsp caraway seeds, crushed
    150g pearl barley
    200ml wheat beer
    500ml vegetable stock
    2 tbsp crème fraîche
    ½ tbsp wholegrain mustard
    ¼ x 25g pack chives, finely chopped

    Method

    1 Put a large, heavy-based saucepan over a medium heat and cook the bacon until crisp; use a slotted spoon to transfer to a plate and dab with kitchen paper. Return the pan to the heat with the oil, then tip in the soffritto and squash. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5-8 minutes until softened and the squash has started to brown around the edges. Scatter in the caraway seeds and pearl barley then stir-fry for a further 1 minute.

    2 Increase the heat, return the bacon to the pan and pour in the beer; let it bubble away and reduce by half, then add the stock. Gently simmer, stirring now and again, for 35-40 minutes until the liquid has been absorbed and the barley is just tender. You may need to add a little water if the stock evaporates too quickly.

    3 To serve, stir the crème fraîche and mustard together then dollop on top of the hotpot. Scatter over some chives and a generous grinding of black pepper.

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