Looking for a filling, meatless meal in a bowl? Ladle up this delicious soup. It's a treasured favorite with my husband, five kids and grandkids—and guaranteed to warm body and soul. —Darlene Wiese-Appleby, Creston, Ohio
- 1 medium leek (white portion only), halved and thinly sliced
- 1 cup chopped celery
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 3/4 pound sliced fresh mushrooms
- 1-1/2 cups chopped peeled turnips
- 1-1/2 cups chopped carrots
- 4 cans (14-1/2 ounces each) reduced-sodium beef broth or vegetable broth
- 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon caraway seeds
- 1 cup quick-cooking barley
- 4 cups fresh baby spinach, cut into thin strips
- In a large saucepan coated with cooking spray, cook leek and celery in oil for 2 minutes. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Add the mushrooms, turnips and carrots; cook 4-5 minutes longer or until mushrooms are tender.
- Stir in the broth, tomatoes and seasonings. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until turnips are tender. Add barley; simmer 10 minutes longer. Stir in spinach; cook 5 minutes more or until spinach and barley are tender. Discard bay leaf. Yield: 10 servings (about 3 quarts).
Originally published as Mushroom Barley Soup in Light & Tasty October/November 2006, p36
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