Vegetable Barley Soup

This is a hearty, winter vegetable soup that’s a favorite with my friends and family.  It’s also a favorite with me because it has a measly 70 calories per cup.   Unfortunately, it’s one of those recipes I’ve used for years and it’s become a kind of “taste as you go” recipe where I’ve adapted it to suit my taste.  I’m giving the basic recipe but I always use a lot more of the spices and I use more beef base.  We like cabbage so I always use more than the recipe calls for and I add it at the beginning instead of the end because my family likes it cooked a little longer.  I also add the barley at the very end because I usually use the quick cooking variety.   Anyway, here’s the basic recipe as it appeared in Cooking Light 1988.

1 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped celery
1 clove crushed garlic
7 cups of water
1 28 oz. can tomato bits
1 cup thinly sliced carrots
1/2 cup barley
2 Tablespoons beef soup base
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon curry powder
1 bay leaf
1 cup thinly sliced leeks
1 cup shredded cabbage
1/2 cup peeled, diced turnip

Coat a large Dutch oven with Pam;  place over medium heat until hot.  Add onion, celery, and garlic.  Saute until vegetables are tender.

Add water and next ten ingredients.  Stir well and bring to a boil.  Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes.  Stir in leeks, cabbage, and turnip.  Cover and simmer an additional 15 minutes.  Remove and discard bay leaf before serving.

Yield:  12 cups (71 calories per 1-cup serving)


hotrodmama says 25th October @ 21:50

OMG! I have been craving veggie soup! I can’t find my recipe and kept thinking I would come across it sometime soon. I can’t believe this… I’m SO going to the store tomorrow! Thanks!

susan says 26th October @ 19:11

I used to subscribe to “Cooking Light”. I stopped after I realized I was dicking with all the recipes to make them “Cooking Heavy”. Yesterday, par examplee, I made their banana bread recipe (a “back page favorite”), using full test milk, sour cream and (gasp!) whole eggs… delish… husband has been hitting it heavy and there’s just a nubbin left.

Now I subscribe to “Southern Living”, who has never printed the words: “butter substitute”.

Hummmm… wonder why I have a weight issue?

Your soup sounds great, though. Perfect for lazy Fall Sundays… let me just add some home-baked bread and a nice desert…

hotrodmama says 26th October @ 20:27

OMG! I made the soup tonight and I loved it! I have to admit that I spent quite a while in the grocery store. I’ve never bought a leek in my life! Thanks for the recipe, it was awesome!

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