red lentil and barley soup

by Stacy

It’s October 21st and it’s 76 degrees. I’m not bragging. I’m not complaining. I’m just pointing out that there is no reason whatsoever that I wanted soup for lunch today. But I did.

Lucky for you, since I seem to have been surviving for the past two weeks on nothing but pasta with marinara or yogurt. Not today!

It’s sunny, I can see palm trees, and I made soup.

red lentil and barley soup

Red lentil and barley soup, in fact. My intention was to make Heidi Swanson’s red lentil soup, but I didn’t quite have the ingredients, so I made do with what I had. Hey, it worked!

Red Lentil and Barley Soup

Adapted from 101 Cookbooks
Serves 2

2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 onion, diced
4 scallions, diced, whites and greens divided
1 clove garlic, whole and peeled
1 teaspoon chili oil
3-3.5 cups water
1 cube vegetable bullion
2/3 cup red lentils
1/2 cup pearl barley
salt and pepper
feta cheese, croutons (optional)

1.) Heat oil in a medium pan. Add onion, white part of scallions, and garlic clove. Saute, stirring occasionally, until browned. While onions are cooking, carefully sort through lentils looking for rocks or dirt. Rinse lentils and barley; drain well.

2.) When onions are starting to caramelize, slowly add the 3 cups of water. Bring to a boil and add bullion cube. Stir until bullion cube is dissolved. Add lentils and barley. Simmer about 40 minutes or until barley is tender. Add up to another 1/2 cup of water if soup is too thick, stirring well.

3.) Add salt if needed (if soup tastes “flat”), then serve immediately. To garnish, top with the green parts of the scallions, croutons, feta cheese, and some black pepper.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Birch October 21, 2009 at 6:24 pm

BWAHAHAHAHA! You may get used to it, but the first year you’ll probably still have seasonally-appropriate food cravings. Your body knows better than you do, and doesn’t get that you’ve moved.

FL was horrible for me, and it’s taken a few years to get used to IL. And I still hate the wet/icy winters. Much prefer snowy/freezing-your-@$$-off winters. Less uncomfortable, really.


stacy October 21, 2009 at 6:28 pm

It was below 60 this morning and the windows were open and my feet got cold. Then I decided I wanted soup for lunch. So it’s not that much of a stretch, I suppose.

Now stop reading the interwebz and call me back. ;p


Frenchie October 22, 2009 at 10:54 pm

I have been making a lot of this soup as well, isn’t it wonderful how the lentils just fall apart creating a thick and hearty soup? I always use parley too, although the first time I made it, the whole thing grew so much it almost overflowed.


rachel October 25, 2009 at 8:33 am

I love lentil soup! Thanks for the recipe.


stacy October 27, 2009 at 10:53 am

Thanks for stopping by! Good luck coat-shopping!


canihavesomemoremum May 20, 2010 at 9:37 pm

I’ve made this twice already and I’m in love with it. Thank you for introducing me to the yumminess of barley.


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