Monday, November 7, 2011

Chicken Barley Soup

As you all know I love soup. I love making soup, eating soup and trying new soup recipes. Soup to me is the ultimate comfort food. I think if I had the choice I would eat soup everyday. The way I look at it you get protein and veggies all in one flavorful bite. And soup always has left-overs which taste better as they age and all the flavors marry together. Thinking of this is making me salivate.

I was reading Everyday Food Magazine and I found a new way to cook chicken soup. Yes, a new way. I love my recipe for soup (which has been handed down from my grandparents), but when another comes along I will be the first to try it and not hesitate one bit. This one is a bit unique in that it has spinach and barley added.

This is what I did ...
Chicken Barley Soup
1 tablespoon of olive oil
4 carrots sliced
4 celery stalks (if they have leaves on them I add the leaves too)
1 medium onion diced
4 boneless skinless chicken thighs cut into 1/2" pieces
6 cups of organic chicken broth/stock
2 teaspoons of dried thyme
1 cup of quick-cooking barley
5 cups of baby spinach (one bunch)

In a large dutch oven or stock pot heat the olive oil with the celery, carrots, onion cook until tender (about 8 minutes). Add the chciken and season with salt-n-pepper and cook till chicken is browned on edges.

Add the broth/stock and thyme and bring to a boil. Stir in the barley, cover and reduce heat and simmer till barley is tender and chicken is cooked (10-12 minutes).

Last add the spinach and cook until wilted (1 minute). Season with salt-n-pepper if needed.

The spinach made this dish more veggie/green like and the barley made it more filling without adding pasta. Barley lately seems to be my new go to for fillers in soups over pasta since it is better for you and gluten free.

Try this one ... super easy to make and can be made in less than 30 minutes if you have left over chicken or a rotisserie chicken from the market. So healthy and so yummy.


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