Vegetable Barley and Lentil Soup
2-3 carrots - chopped
2-3 celery ribs - chopped
1 medium onion - chopped
2 cloves of garlic - minced
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/2 cup pot barley
1/2 cup dried green lentils
1 hot pepper - finely chopped
1 28 oz. can diced tomatoes (or the equivalent from fresh/frozen tomatoes)
2 cups water/broth
1/4 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp pepper
Dash of salt
1. In a large pot, saute the carrots, celery, onions and garlic in olive oil for about 5-7 minutes. Add ground ginger (Fresh ginger would be best but I didn't have any so I had to settle for the good old spice rack version). Saute for a few more minutes until veggies are softening but still crisp. You could also add any other veggies you would like. A bit of white turnip or some cabbage would be delicious.
2. Add barley and lentils. Cook for about 5 more minutes, stirring constantly.
3. Add tomatoes, diced hot pepper (omit if you aren't down with a little kick), water or broth, salt, pepper and cumin. You could also use a can of diced tomatoes with chillies or peppers in it. I didn't do this because I have a ton of hot peppers and tomatoes still in my freezer from my garden. For the broth, I used 2 cups of hot water mixed with a package of chicken bullion so that when my dear sweet husband looks at the soup funny and asks me if it is "another vegetarian concoction" I can (sort of) truthfully tell him no. Homemade or store bought chicken or vegetable broth would be fine but I would use about half broth and half water, I don't think you need too strengthen the flavour too much.
4. Add bay leaf and bring to a boil. Cover and let simmer for however long you have. The soup would probably be ready in about 30 minutes or so, but as with any soup, sauce or stew, I always like to let it simmer for at least a couple hours to maximize the melding of flavours.
(Sorry my food picture taking skills are sub-par. I think I need photography lessons from my dear brother.)
This soup, served with fresh rolls, will make a delicious and easy lunch for us tomorrow after church and it will also double up as my lunch for a few days throughout the week. It would always be perfectly fine if you wanted to freeze it in individual portions for later!
I hope you enjoy! Check out The Grocery Cart Challenge for more great recipes!