Barley Chicken Stew

It’s Mona and my turn to demonstrate in the South Arm Community Kitchen. Mona made a German dish called Barley Chicken Stew for the main dish while I made Malaysian Fruit Rojak for dessert. I had blogged about the Fruit Rojak here.


The Fruit Rojak was accepted well even though it is a little too spicy for some of the members in the group despite I did not add Thai chili to the dish. The only problem is the confusion of the origin of the dish where I kept hearing people saying Thai or Indonesian when they mentioned about the rojak.


The Barley Chicken Stew is a very hearty meal and it’s very filing too. It’s a great dish for cold weather.


Another new member of the kitchen, Jane, brought some corn meal muffin to share with us. Jane was a school teacher for 25 years, teaching cooking in school. We hope she will share with us many of her culinary skills.


  • 1 cup pearl barley, soak in water or broth overnight
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 to 3 chicken drumsticks
  • 1 litre chicken broth
  • 150g cream cheese
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoons chopped chives or green onion and parley each
  • a pinch of tumeric
  • a pinch of chili flakes
  • salt and pepper to taste


Mona made her own chicken broth with chicken bones and she added tumeric to the chicken broth for colour. Mona also bought organic pearl barley for about $5 per kilo from Galloway which is just 30% more expensive than regular ones. She also brought her own frozen chopped green onion and parsley which she planted in her garden during summer.

Click on Read More for the instructions.


barleystew-23-300x200Remove the skin from the drumsticks. Break the bone so that it will release more flavour to the stew.
barleystew-24-300x200Saute the onion in a large pot with the olive oil over medium heat until the onion is soft. Add chopped garlic and saute for another 30 seconds.
barleystew-22-300x200Add the soaked barley and mix well with the sauteed onion and garlic.
barleystew-21-300x200Add the chicken broth and bring it to a boil.You may add some turmeric for flavour and coloring at this point.

Cover and cook until the barley is almost soft, about 30 to 45 minutes.

barleystew-19-300x200Add the chicken pieces.
barleystew-17-300x200Dissolve the tomato paste in some hot water and add to the stew.Cook for another 30 minutes, until the chicken is cooked.

Remove the chicken pieces to debone them.

barleystew-16-300x200Remove half of the barley stew from the pot for blending until smooth and creamy.
barleystew-15-300x200Return the blended barley mixture and chicken meat back into the pot and add the chopped chives or green onion and parsley.
barleystew-14-300x200Melt the cream cheese with some hot water or broth. You may substitute the cream cheese with sour cream.
barleystew-13-300x200Add the cream cheese into the barley stew and stir to combine well.Season with salt, pepper and chili powder if desired.
barleystew-11-300x200Here it is, a hearty Barley Chicken Stew.

Mona, thank you for sharing in the South Arm Community Kitchen.

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  1. verbatimcries

    Uncle or Aunty 😛
    I believe you’re malaysian? I’ve a hunch though. hehehe
    Though this post is a year ago just wanted to type this 🙂

    Rojak/ Rujak

    it’s an south east asian dish 🙂

    The THai have their version with their own rojak paste
    The Indonesias have a variety of rujak- fruits (Rujak buah), vegetables and some added with meat. Their rujak paste is different too.
    In Malaysia too they have their version of Rojak 🙂 Fruits, those with fried fritters, cuttle-fish, boil egg ( that one is known as Pasembo) ;]

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