Culinate recipe editor’s note: On a chilly day, I can’t think of anything more satisfying than a bowl of this barley soup with a slice of whole-grain bread spread with salted butter. I’ve made many pots of beef-barley soup and this one is by far the best — especially the next day (though you’ll probably have to thin it with water).
Surely one of the best-known and most-loved grain soups is mushroom barley soup. Typically it is made with pearl barley, so named because its bran layer has been rubbed or “pearled” off.
While you can make this soup with any type of barley, I encourage you to try it with the hull-less barley. Unlike other forms of this much-loved grain, the hull-less variety has the courtesy to resist guzzling up every last drop of liquid if the soup sits awhile.
|¼||oz. (¼ cup) dried mushrooms (porcini are divine, but supermarket dried mushrooms are fine)|
|1||lb. beef chuck, cut into ½-inch pieces|
|~||Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste|
|1½ to 2½||Tbsp. vegetable oil|
|1||Tbsp. balsamic vinegar|
|3||cups chopped leeks (white and light-green parts)|
|1||cup finely diced carrots|
|½||lb. cremini or button mushrooms, some sliced, some halved or quartered|
|¾||cup barley, preferably hull-less, rinsed|
|¼||cup chopped fresh dill|
Grain exchange: Use kamut instead of barley.
Vegetarian mushroom-barley soup: Omit the beef. Instead of adding 6 cups of water, use vegetable broth. Use 2 teaspoons Japanese soy sauce to replace some of the salt.
This content is from the book Whole Grains Every Day, Every Way by Lorna Sass.
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