Anyway, I'm feeling kind of miserable and so all I wanted for dinner was soup--even though it was 78 degrees outside today. And as I type this post I'm having a big bowl of my mushroom barley and it is delicious! Afterwards, I'm going to curl up on the sofa with a big mug of herbal tea and crash for the remainder of the evening. Hopefully tomorrow will be a better day and I'll start my Thanksgiving series, I promise!
1 cup hulled barley, soaked overnight, drained
5 cups filtered water
1 tsp kosher salt
10 oz cremini mushrooms, stems trimmed and thinly sliced
1 medium onion, diced small
1 tbsp minced fresh thyme
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 tbsp unbleached a/p flour
6-7 cups vegetable stock, heated
1/4 cup dried porcini mushrooms, steeped
1 cup sliced organic celery, about 2 stalks
1 cup diced carrot, about one large
1 cup diced Yukon gold potato, about 1 medium/large
1 bay leaf
1 cup frozen green peas
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and black pepper to taste
Minced parsley for garnish
Note: If you want to make this gluten free then substitute short-grain brown rice for the barley and cornstarch for the flour. You may need to add more thickener since the barley acts as a natural thickening agent.
- Drain barley and place in a sauce pan. Add filtered water and 1 tsp salt, bring to a boil and reduce to medium-low and cook for one hour until tender, adding more water if necessary. When finished drain barley, reserving 1 cup of cooking liquid and set aside.
- Heat vegetable stock to a boil, add dried mushrooms, remove from heat and let steep for 30 minutes or until barley is finished cooking. Drain vegetable/mushroom stock and set aside.
- In a large dutch oven or pot, heat olive oil and add sliced mushrooms and cook until golden brown, about 10 minutes.
- Add onion, garlic, thyme, salt and pepper to taste and cook for another five minutes until onions are soft.
- Stir in flour and mix well and then add 6 cups of vegetable stock, along with 1 cup of barley cooking liquid and bring to a boil.
- Next add celery, carrots, potatoes and bay leaf and reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for about 20-30 minutes for flavors to combine.
- Stir in barley and green peas and heat through, adding more stock if too thick. Check for salt and pepper and add more if desired.
- Remove bay leaf and garnish with minced parsley.