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Food – Hearty Mushroom Barley Soup / Stew

Food - Hearty Mushroom Barley Soup / Stew

Hearty Mushroom Barley Soup / Stew

1 Tablespoon Oil (I used grapeseed, but Olive or Vegetable will do)
½ Medium Onion, slivered (about 1¼ cups)
½ Cup Dry Barley, rinsed (I used the inexpensive pearl barley)
2 Large Garlic Cloves, Minced (or about 2 teaspoons bottled minced garlic)
1 Teaspoon Dried Thyme
8 Ounces Sliced Button or Cremini Mushrooms
4 Cups (1 quart) Beef or Mushroom Broth
1 Tablespoon Tomato Paste
1 Teaspoon Balsamic Vinegar
1 Bay Leaf
¼ -1 Teaspoon Salt to Taste
1 Teaspoon Miso Paste (or simply more salt to taste)
Freshly Ground Black Pepper to Taste
Heat the oil in a stock pot over medium heat. Add the onions, and sauté for about 5 minutes, or until they are translucent. Reduce the heat just a touch, add the barley, garlic, and thyme, and sauté for another 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in the mushrooms, followed by the broth, tomato paste, vinegar, bay leaf, and I would start with ¼ teaspoon of salt and the miso if using. Bring the soup to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover, and allow the soup to simmer for at least 1 hour, or until the barley is nice and tender. Season to taste with additional salt and black pepper to taste.

Yields 2 hearty, meal-sized servings

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