Eating is a necessity. However, we choose what to eat. The choices we make reveal a great deal about us. The food you eat can tell quite a bit about your heritage, your family, your fears, your sense of adventure, your attitude toward yourself and others, and a myriad of other personal tidbits to anyone paying attention. Everything about eating is a glimpse into your soul.

I hope to reveal a little bit about myself to you through my food. I enjoy cooking. I enjoy eating. I find pleasure in bringing pleasure to others. I hope that by sharing my recipes I bring you a little bit of joy.

Cook my food. Feed it to the people you love.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Barley Mushroom Soup

Winter seems to be coming early this year.  Lows were in the 30s here yesterday and we are in Florida.  When it is really cold out nothing makes me feels cozier than soup.  Barley mushroom is a healthy choice when deciding what soup to make. Barley helps control bloodsugar, reduces blood pressure, helps lower cholesterol, and may help with weight control.  Mushrooms are an excellent source of potassium which has been shown to lower blood pressure. Riboflavin, niacin, and selenium are found in abundance in mushrooms.  These are antioxidants that aid our cells in fighting off free radicals.  If you don’t care about all of that, how about this:  This soup is crazy good.

Servings: 6-8
Hardware:  A cutting board and knives, measuring spoons and cups, a pot with a tight-fitting lid, a large soup pot, a wooden spoon, a colander or strainer
Time:  prep:  10 minutes, cook 1 hour

  • 1 cup barley
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 2 carrots (about a cup)
  • 1 celery stalk (about ½ cup)
  • 1 pound baby Portobello mushrooms
  • ½ small onion (about ½ cup)
  • 6 sprigs of fresh thyme (or 1 teaspoon powdered thyme)
  • 7 cups liquid (I used vegetable broth)
  • S&P to taste

Barley Mushroom Soup

  1. Boil 4 cups of water in the small pot.  Stir in the barley.  Cover with a tight fitting lid and reduce to simmer.  Simmer for 40 minutes or until the barley is soft.  Drain. 
  2. While the barley is cooking, roughly chop the garlic, celery, carrots, and onions.  Rinse and slice the mushrooms.
  3. Heat the olive oil on medium to medium-high in the large soup pot.  Sauté the onion, garlic, carrots, and celery until the carrots are tender.  Stir often.  Everything should be bubbling, but not browning.  This should take about 7 minutes.
  4. Add the mushrooms and cook for another 3-4 minutes or until the mushrooms begin to release their liquid.
  5. Add the broth and thyme (if you are using fresh thyme, count the sprigs so that you can fish them out later) and bring to a boil.  Stir in the barley and turn down to a simmer.  Allow the soup to simmer for about 15- 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  6. Fish out the thyme sprigs.  S&P to taste.
  7. Serve right away with crusty bread.

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