Barley is a versatile and nutritious grain that’s high in minerals and vitamins such as B1 and B3. It is a good source of fiber and is thought to have some benefits in helping to lower cholesterol. Keep in mind though, it is not gluten-free so if you’re avoiding gluten, this recipe would also work well with brown rice or buckwheat as gluten-free options.
- 2 cups water
- ½ cup dry (raw) barley, rinsed
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 large onions, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
- 1 ½ L chicken broth (or vegetable broth)
- 2 cups vegetables of your choice (broccoli, cauliflower and mushrooms, for example)
- Juice of half a lemon
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 green onions, thinly sliced
In a medium saucepan, add water and barley, bring to a boil, then reduce to low heat and let simmer for about 45 minutes until water is evaporated and barley is soft.
In a large stock pot, warm olive oil over medium heat.
Add diced onion, let cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and translucent (do not brown the onion), 5 minutes.
Add the garlic and cook another minute or two.
Add the chicken/vegetable stock, bring to a boil and let it cook until it reduces by about a quarter.
Add in the cooked barley and vegetables and cook for another 5 minutes until the vegetables are tender but still have some bite (the starch from the barley will thicken the soup slightly).
Add the lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste, and top with sliced green onions before serving.