Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Feel Better - Vegetable Barley Soup

This soup is great for a couple reasons.  One is that it is comforting and nourishing when you are not feeling well.  It is also an everything-but-the-kitchen-sink kind of soup.  You can add or leave out anything and it still turns out great!  You can throw everything in a crock pot in the morning and set it on low, or whip it together for a spontaneous lunch or dinner.

2 Tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
3-4 cloves of garlic, chopped
3 carrots, peeled and chopped
s/p (healthy dose)
2 small bay leaves
2 cups vegetable stock
4 cups water (you can use more stock and less water, thats just all that I had on hand)
1 cup of barely
3 sprigs of thyme
3 large kale leaves, stem removed and coarsely chopped
1 zucchini, chopped
2 ears of corn, kernels cut off
1 can of kidney beans
handful of green beans, chopped into bite size
couple dashes of red chili pepper flakes

Heat oil in a large dutch oven, or stock pot, over medium heat.  Add onions, garlic and carrots and saute for 5 minutes.  Season with s/p.  Add liquid, bay leaves, thyme and barley. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 30 minutes or so.  Add in veggies and chili flakes and simmer until tender. Check seasonings before serving and add more s/p if needed, and remove bay leaves and thyme sprigs.

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