Here is another recipe to add to the always make pile, from the December 2011 RealSimple magazine. This dish is simple to make, it just takes more time to actually cook. My only call out is, make sure you have an oven safe dutch oven, you cannot improvise with any other type of pan or pot. I also think this meal will be perfect for my marathon prep days.


  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 1 small butternut squash (about 1 ½ pounds) —peeled, seeded, and cut into 1 inch pieces (3 cups)
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • kosher salt and black pepper
  • 1 cup pearl barley
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 3 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 5 ounces baby spinach
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan (2 ounces), plus more for serving
  • 1 tbs unsalted butter

Heat oven to 400. Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or large, oven-safe saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the squash, onion, ¾ tsp salt and ¼ tsp pepper and cook, stirring often, until the onion begins to soften, 4 to 6 minutes.

Add the barley to the vegetables and cook, stirring for 1 minutes. Add the wine and cook, stirring, until evaporated, about 1 minutes. Add the broth and bring to a boil, cover the pot and transfer it to oven. Bake until the barley is tender, 35 to 40 minutes.

Stir in the spinach, Parmesan, and butter. Serve with additional Parmesan.

{Photos by Me}