Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Vegetable Barley Soup

This soup is hearty and so yummy. You can eat it cold or hot. It's a great replacement for a salad. You can put any veggies you want in it but I really like this combination. This recipe involves a lot of chopping but if you use the slicer attachment on your food processor it goes really fast. Also, I cook the barley separately and rinse it in cool water before adding it to the soup. I have found that it prevents the barley from swelling and taking over. It has become a staple around our house. It makes about 6 quarts of soup, make sure your pot is big enough. Mark and I go through this in a week, easily.

In a med sauce pan, bring water to a boil to cook 1 cup pearled barley. I let the barley soak in a mesh strainer in a bowl while water comes to a boil. When the water boils, lift the barley out of the soaking water and rinse it for a minute before adding it to the boiling water. Let barley cook while making the soup. Check the package for the amount of water to cook it in and time. When it's done, rinse it in cold water. It should be chewy but not crunchy.

In a large pot over med high heat bring to a boil:
1 qt. vegetable or tomato juice
2 cups broth of your choice
2 14 oz cans diced tomatoes
1 tsp oregano
1 TBS dried basil
2 bay leaves
2 TBS Worcestershire

While the tomato base is heating, chop and add the following in this order:
(do wait for it to boil, stir the vegetables in as you go)
1/2 onion chopped
4 stalks celery chopped
1 cup chopped carrots
2 red bell peppers, seeds and stem removed and chopped
1/4 head of cauliflower cut into flowerets
about the same amount of Broccoli cut into flowerets
1/4 of a med or 1/2 of a small head of green (or red cabbage) thinly sliced/shredded
1 zucchini (I leave the peel on) sliced in half the long way and chopped.

Allow soup to come to a boil, turn the heat down and simmer for 10 minutes until vegetables are crisp tender. Taste broth and add salt and/or Worcestershire (if you want more heat).

Add a proportionate amount of barley to the soup you are going to eat right away. Allow the remainder of the soup to cool before adding the rest of the barely. Refrigerate.

Meatless Chili

Active prep time 20 minutes. Total time 60 min.
Makes 8 servings. Using a food processor to chop veggies makes it go really fast.

Heat in a large pot over med high heat:
1 TBS Olive oil

1/2 med sweet onion (red or yellow) chopped
2 tsp Cumin
2 TBS Chili powder
2 TBS Dried Oregano (Mexican if you have it)
1 TBS Salt
2 Stalks Celery Chopped
2 Red Bell Peppers diced (Can use green)
2 Jalapeno peppers chopped (wear food handler gloves while cutting)
3 cloves garlic chopped
Cook with lid on, stirring occasionally until onion is transparent, about 5 minutes

2 4oz cans chopped green chili peppers (choose heat depending on how spicy you like your chili)
3 28 oz cans diced tomatoes
1 (15 oz) Can kidney beans drained and rinsed
1 (15 oz) Black beans drained and rinsed
1 (15 oz) Garbanzo beans drained and rinsed
Heat to a boil and turn heat to simmer for at least 30 minutes.
Taste to check heat. If you want it hotter add tabasco or ground pepper.
5 minutes before serving add:
1 (15 oz) Whole kernel corn

Serve in a bowl or over a baked potato.