Mushroom Barley Soup
Our advice: do not make this hearty soup when you’re hungry. It takes a long time to cook and tastes even better the second day! It is, however, worth the wait, since it’s about as delicious and warming as a soup can be. Serve it with a salad and some bread and you’ll have a perfect dinner. (And leftovers are great for your Thermos.)
Large heavy-bottomed pot
Sharp knife (adult needed)
Wooden spoon or heatproof spatula
- Put the pot on the stove and turn the heat to medium. When it is hot, carefully add the oil.
- Add the onion, carrots, celery, garlic, and thyme and cook until tender, 10–15 minutes.
- Add the mushrooms and barley and stir well.
- Add the broth, raise the heat to high and bring to a boil. As soon as the soup boils, turn the heat down to low and cook, partially covered, for 2–2 ½ hours, stirring frequently.
- Now taste the soup. Does it need anything to boost the flavor? More thyme? A squeeze of lemon juice? A pinch of salt or a grinding of black pepper? Add whatever you think it needs, then serve right away or transfer to a container, cover and refrigerate up to 3 days.
Substitute brown or wild rice for the barley.
Add ¼ cup fresh or frozen corn kernels, chopped tomatoes, or baby spinach 10 minutes before you’re finished cooking.