Vegan, Vegan Main Dishes, Vegan on a Shoestring

Pearl Barley, Rosemary, Leek and Potato Stew with Sage Dumplings. . Vegan . .

A delicious dish, befitting of mid-winter, comforting and heart-warming, an old-fashioned stew using a classic combination: pearl barley, leeks, potatoes and rosemary.  Veganised.  Optional extra:  fluffy, savoury, sage, vegan dumplings.

Barley was one of the first cultivated grains, and is now grown widely and found in many styles of cuisine.  Recipes for barley broth of one kind or another can be found dating back many centuries…and in many parts of the globe…

This stew is simple to make and very moreish…..

No fancy ingredients, just good basic, economical home cooking, and a fab. use of seasonal herbs.

I love this stew.

fluffy sage vegan dumpling in a vegan pearl barley stew



Serves 4



  • 1 kg. potatoes
  • 1-2 leeks ( about 500-600gms.)
  • 130gms. pearl barley
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 3 sage leaves
  • handful of rosemary (8-10gms. fresh or 2tbs. dried)
  • 1500 ml. strong vegetable stock (I used reduced salt bouillon and added one extra tsp. than it instructs)
  • 1 scant tsp. salt
  • 1-2tsp. ground black pepper
  • 2-3 tbs.olive oil


  • 50gms. self-raising flour
  • 25gms. vegetable suet
  • 2 tbs. nutritional yeast
  • 4-6 sage leaves – finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
  • 2-3 tbs. cold water



  • Wash and drain barley.
  • Place in a large saucepan.
  • Add 1500 ml of hot vegetable stock.
  • Bring to boil and then simmer, covered for 25 mins.
chop potatoes slice leeks
  • Wash and slice leeks.
  • Peel and cube potatoes ( 1 – 1.5 cm)
  • In a large heavy casserole pan, heat 2 tbs.oil.
  • Add bay leaves and sage leaves.
  • Sizzle 30 secs.
  • Add sliced leeks.  Sauté on low heat – 3 mins.
  • Add 2 tbs. ground rosemary.  Sauté gently for 2 mins.
  • Add pepper and salt.
  • Add potatoes.  Sauté for further 5 mins.
  • When the pearl barley has simmered for 25 mins: transfer barley and cooking stock to leek and potato pan.
  • Bring to the boil, then cover and simmer on lowest heat setting for 25 mins.


  • Mix together: self-raising flour, vegetable suet, nutritional yeast, salt, pepper and chopped sage leaves.
  • Slowly add water until it mixes to a moist dough.
  • Leave for 10 mins.
  • On a floured board, cut the dough into four pieces, and roll into balls.
  • When the stew has cooked for 25 mins, place the dumplings carefully in the stew.
  • Cover and simmer on lowest setting for 20-30 mins.

Serve piping hot with extra nutritional yeast if desired, and a little bit of magic candlelight!







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