Monday, February 20, 2012

Mushroom Barley Soup

I love soup. It is one of those foods that you can get creative with, without having to spend a lot of money. That is just one of the many virtues of  soup. If chosen correctly, it can be an excellent way to eat well and watch calories. It is always better the next day. You end up with a lot, so you can share. If you still have some left, it usually freezes well. I don't usually make home made mushroom soup, but I have been experimenting and came up with a really good hearty soup that happens to be Vegan as well! As I was preparing to make this, I realized I was out of chicken stock, so I used some of my son's vegan bouillon, called, "Not Chick'n".
It was awesome! I didn't miss the chicken, this stuff is so good. It is a simple recipe. It does need some simmering time to cook the barley, but it is so worth it!

 2  tablespoons vegetable oil
1   medium onion
2 - 8 ounce packages fresh mushrooms, sliced, I used one pack of white and 1 pack of portobello 
2  tablespoons flour
1/4 cup celery, chopped fine
1  bay leaf
4 cups chicken broth, or 2 cubes Not Chick'n mixed with 4 cups steaming water
1/2 cup barley
salt and pepper to taste
chopped green onions for garnish (optional)

Heat oil in a large pot.
Add onions, celery and mushrooms 
Cook over medium heat for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently.
Reduce heat to low and stir in flour.
Add broth in a constant stream, while stirring, to mix with flour.
Add the barley, bay leaf, and salt and pepper.
Cover and simmer on low for about 45 minutes or until barley is done.
Remove bay leaf, serve topped with green onion as a garnish.

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