Tuesday, December 10, 2013

A comforting, snowy evening...

Here in upstate NY the weather is turning frigid outside.  It makes me want to hybernate somewhat, or at least cozy up on the couch with some hot tea and good movies.  Comfort foods are in order, as I'm watching the snow fall out my window.  My mushroom barley soup is perfect for days like this.  I've had friends ask for the recipe before, and I keep forgetting it, till I'm going through the motions of making it.  This time I'm blogging it so I'll always know where it is.  Here's what I did:

Mushroom Barley Soup

1 lb. (2- 8 oz. pkgs.) of baby bella mushrooms sliced
1/2 of a large spanish onion medium diced
2-3 ribs of celery with leaves medium diced
2 carrots peeled, and diced
3 cloves garlic smashed & minced
1/2 cup pearled barley or use brown rice for gluten free 
8 cups vegetable broth
4 cups water
1 t. thyme
1 t. black pepper
1 t. dried parsley
2 t. sea salt
Olive oil

Coat the bottom of your soup pot with 3 T. or so of olive oil and saute the mirepoix for around 5 minutes.  (mirepoix= onions, carrots, celery= aromatics for soup. There's your french word of the day!) Add the garlic and continue to saute for another minute. 

Add the sliced mushrooms and saute for another couple minutes till they wilt and start to soften.  Then add your barley and continue to saute a couple more minutes.

Then add your vegetable broth, water, herbs and spices.  And stir, stir, stir.  Lower the heat to medium low, and let it simmer for 45 minutes, or until the barley is tender.  Check and stir every once in a while during that time.

I served this soup tonight with a simple spinach salad with a homemade raspberry vinaigrette (raspberry infused balsamic reduction, olive oil, salt & pepper),  pomegranate jewels, goat cheese, and walnuts.  And we had a nice Malbec that went well with it as well.  All that just happened to be in the house.  No one wants to drive in weather like this for special ingredients.  But the way it fell together, it was definitely a comforting meal.

Bon Appetit!

Wheat, dairy, soy, peanut, egg, and nut free. Contains gluten, unless you use brown rice instead of barley.

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