- 1–2 Tbs. each butter and
- 2 leeks
- 2–4 carrots
- 3–5 ribs celery
- 4 oz. baby portobella (or white) mushrooms
- ¼–1/2 tsp. bay leaf seasoning (or one bay leaf)
- 1–2 tsp. thyme
- 6 c. chicken broth
- 2 c. cooked chicken
- ½ c. barley*
- Slice and sauté vegetables in butter and olive oil about 5 minutes.
- Add seasonings and sauté a few more minutes.
- Add broth and barley.
- Bring to a boil and reduce heat to simmer until barley is done, about 30-45 minutes. If the barley soaks up too much broth, add more.
- Add chicken, 1 tsp salt and ½-1 tsp pepper.
I would highly recommend making a big pot of chicken stock and using the homemade stock and cooked chicken for this soup.
Soaked option: Soak a cup of barley in water and 2 Tbs whey or lemon juice overnight, then cook with salt about 45 minutes. Drain before adding to soup. Eye up the amount, then save and freeze the rest for your next batch.
*I got my barley at a health foods store – “organic pearled barley” – for less money than what I can usually find at Meijer, Quaker “quick” barley. If you have to use quick barley, it will still be tasty, but that whole barley, soaked, was amazing! If you can find “hulled barley”, I’ve since learned that it is even less processed than “pearled”, therefore more nutritious, and equally delicious.