Steak, Egg, and Mushroom Barley Bowls

Steak, Egg, and Mushroom Barley Bowls

The key to this recipe is going low and slow with your mushrooms – you want to fry them long enough to develop deep colors and deep flavors! Don't rush the process; it could take up to 15 minutes!


Serves: 4

Cost: $$

Skill Level: Intermediate

Time to Make: 60 minutes


2 cups mixed mushrooms (such as oyster, shiitake, and cremini)

6 scallions, white parts only

1 cup hulled barley

1 shallot

1/3 cup canola oil

1 garlic clove

3 tablespoons butter, divided

2 tablespoons olive oil, divided

Salt and pepper to taste

2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 tablespoon Chinese rice wine

1 teaspoon sugar

1 teaspoon fish sauce

1 pound skirt steak

2 eggs

Optional Garnish: Cilantro, thinly sliced jalapeño, sliced scallion greens


Prep Ingredients: Make barley according to package instructions. Once tender, drain and rinse and set aside. Continue with the rest of the recipe as the barley cooks since it typically takes about 1 hour for the barley to cook. Thinly slice the white parts of the scallions cross-wise. Reserve the green tops for garnish. Roughly chop the mushrooms into bite size pieces. Thinly slice the shallot into rings. Thinly slice the garlic clove.  Pat the skirt steak dry and season with salt and pepper and allow to come to room temperature. 

Make the sauce base: In a medium bowl, combine the soy sauce, Chinese rice wine, sugar, and fish sauce and stir to dissolve the sugar. Set aside.

In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of butter and 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat until the butter is completely melted. Add the mushrooms and arrange in a single layer and season very lightly with salt and pepper. Continue cooking, stirring regularly until deep brown and crispy around the edges, around 10-15 minutes. Adjust the heat as necessary while cooking to avoid burning the mushrooms.

While the mushrooms cook, heat the canola oil in a small sauce pan until hot. Add the sliced shallots and stir constantly until browned, about 5 minutes. Be careful not to burn them! Remove the shallots from the pan and arrange on paper towels. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Reserve the shallot oil. Once the shallot oil has cooled down a little, add it to the bowl with the sauce base and stir to combine. Wash out the sauce pan and set aside for the eggs.

Once the mushrooms are browned, add the sliced scallion whites and sliced garlic and 1 tablespoon of butter. Stir to combine and cook over medium heat until fragrant and the garlic has browned slightly. Remove the mixture from the skillet and set aside in a large bowl.

Heat 3 cups of water in the same saucepan you used for the shallots over medium high heat until boiling. Gently add the eggs to the pan and set a timer for exactly 7 minutes. Once finished, drain and immediately run cold water over the eggs to stop the cooking process. Carefully peel and set the eggs aside. You will cut the eggs in half length-wise when it's ready to serve.

Heat oil in the skillet and place the skirt steak and allow to cook for 3-4 minutes. Flip, add the remaining tablespoon of butter, and cook an additional 3-4 minutes, spooning the melted butter over the top of the steak. Turn off the heat and allow the steak to rest on a wooden cutting board for 10 minutes before slicing thinly across the grain.

While the steak is resting, heat the skillet back up and add the drained barley in an even layer. Cook for 5 minutes or until the barley begins to develop a golden brown color. Add the mushroom mixture back in and then add the sauce. Stir to coat the barley and mushrooms in the sauce and cook for an additional 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat.

To Serve: Divide the barley and mushrooms between bowls and top with a few pieces of steak. Add the garnishes you'd like (I recommend roughly chopped cilantro, sliced scallion greens, and a few thin slices of jalapeño). Top each dish with the halved soft-boiled eggs and season them very lightly with a crack of pepper and a bit of flaky sea salt. Sprinkle crispy shallots across the top of each bowl. (Not pictured!) Enjoy!

Designer and photographer living in NYC. I work as a design manager in ed tech and I make tasty recipes in my spare time!