Yet Another Mushroom Barley Soup

Posted by on Jan 17, 2010 in Blog

But this time its cream of mushroom soup with barley. I’ve made hundreds of soups in my day, I think this is the best. I probably could of eaten the whole pot! It was a little time consuming to make, but if you prepare, its really easy. I actually did it in steps, I made the barley and softened the porcini mushrooms before I went to my exercise class, then finished when I got home.
I bought yet another amazing item from “Aldi” a cast iron pot. It was on sale for $39.99 before Christmas, I was in the store yesterday and they had them for $22.99! An amazing deal. If you think you have enough pots and pans but you don’t have a cast iron, go get one! I made this yummy soup in mine and it turned out great!
Cream of Mushroom & Barley Soup
1/2 cup pearl barley
4 1/2 cups reduced sodium vegetable broth
1 oz dried porcini mushrooms
2 cups boiling water
2 teaspoons butter
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 cup minced shallots (about 4 medium)
8 cups sliced white mushrooms (about 20 oz) I used 1/2 white mushrooms and 1/2 cremini
2 stalks celery, finely chopped
1 tablespoon minced fresh sage, or 1 teaspoon dried
1/2 teaspoon each salt & pepper
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup dry sherry (don’t use “cooking sherry” get the real stuff)
1/2 cup reduced-fat sour cream
1. Bring barley and 1 1/2 cups broth to a boil in a small saucepan over high heat. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer until tender, 30 to 35 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, combine procinis and boiling water in a medium bowl and soak until softened, about 20 minutes. Line a sieve with paper towels, set it over a bowl and pour in mushrooms and soaking liquid. Reserve the soaking liquid. Transfer the mushrooms to a cutting board and finely chop. Set aside.
3. Heat butter and oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add shallots and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 2 minutes. Add white mushrooms and cook stirring often, until they start to brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Add the porcinis, celery, sage, salt and pepper and cook, stirring often, until beginning to soften, about 3 minutes. Sprinkle flour over the vegetables and cook stirring until the flour is incorporated, about 1 minutes. Add sherry and cook, stirring until most of the sherry has evaporated, about 1 minute.
4. Add the soaking liquid and the remaining 3 cups broth; increase heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the soup has thickened, 18 to 22 minutes.
5. Add the cooked barley and continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until heated through, about 5 minutes more. Stir in the sour cream until incorporated.

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