Like a warm fire on a snowy day, this Vegetable Soup with Basil and Barley soup will restore your wintered soul. Make a big pot of it when you’re in hibernation mode. A soft quilt, a cozy dog or cat and a good movie will add to the enjoyment. A clear broth is infused with many vegetables, fortified with whole grains and finished with fresh basil.
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Vegetable Soup with Basil and Barley
- 1 large onion (diced)
- 3 medium zucchini (diced)
- 3 celery stalks (diced)
- 8 baby carrots or 2 large carrots (sliced)
- A handful of green beans (about 25 , chopped into small pieces.)
- 1 sweet potato or regular potato (peeled and diced)
- 1 red (orange or yellow pepper, diced)
- 1 cup of peas
- 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil
- 2 dried bay leaves. Remember to remove them at the end of cooking.
- 1 package or 8 cubes of Rapunzel No-Salt Vegetable Bouillon Cubes (see notes Do not use vegetable broth or bouillon that you wouldn't sip on its own. This brand is the best I've found on the market.)
- 8 cups of water
- Fresh basil or Thai basil for serving (see notes)
- 2 cups of instant barley (cooked according to the package directions. You can also use brown rice, pasta or quinoa in place of the barley.)
- Sea salt or kosher salt to taste
- Fresh ground pepper to taste
- Cook the instant barley according to the package directions and set aside.
- Meanwhile, put the olive oil in a deep soup pot and saute the onion, carrots, celery, pepper with salt and pepper on medium heat until soft. It helps to occasionally turn down the heat and cover the pot. Add the Rapunzel bouillon cubes, dried bay leaves, 8 cups of water and salt to taste. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for about 10 minutes. Add the sweet potato and the green beans and cook until starting to soften. Taste and adjust the salt. Finish by adding the zucchini and the peas to the pot. Cook until tender crisp. Add a few tablespoons of cooked barley to the soup and stir. Remove bay leaves. Optional: serve with more barley and basil. Enjoy!
The base of this light but satisfying soup is a mix of vegetables and my favorite clean-tasting vegetable bouillon. Rapunzel No Salt Vegetable Bouillon cubes lend a pure vegetable flavor without salt. If you cannot find bouillon cubes, use vegetable stock and omit the water.
Adapted from Jilly Inspired