Le­mon and pearl bar­ley soup

Good Health Choices - - Be Nourished -

SERVES 4-6 VE­GAN

I have al­ways loved us­ing le­mon to add bright­ness to my sal­ads, but lately I have em­braced lemons more as the lead­ing flavour of a dish. This le­mon soup is in­spired by a Greek cit­rusy chicken broth called av­gole­mono – my ver­sion fea­tures pearl bar­ley and chick­peas for max­i­mum hearti­ness. A sim­ple, vi­brant soup for days when you need ex­tra com­fort.

1 brown onion, finely diced Ex­tra vir­gin olive oil

1 gar­lic clove, finely chopped

3 thyme sprigs, leaves picked 220g (1 cup) pearl bar­ley

2 litres (8 cups) veg­etable stock

250g cooked chick­peas

(about 1 drained can)

Juice of ½ – 1 le­mon, plus ex­tra wedges to serve

Sea salt and black pep­per Hand­ful of chopped flat-leaf pars­ley leaves, to serve

1 Place a large pot over a medium–low heat and add the onion along with a good driz­zle of olive oil. Cook for 2 min­utes un­til the onion has soft­ened, then add the gar­lic and thyme leaves. Cook for an­other 2–3 min­utes on low heat, stir­ring, un­til the onion is translu­cent but not coloured.

2 Add the pearl bar­ley and stock to the pan. Cook for 40-45 min­utes, un­til the pearl bar­ley is com­pletely soft and start­ing to break down. Stir in the chick­peas along with the le­mon juice, ad­just­ing the level of cit­rus to suit your in­di­vid­ual taste –

I love it very lemony. Cook un­til ev­ery­thing is heated through. Sea­son with sea salt and lots of black pep­per.

3 To serve, la­dle the soup into bowls and fin­ish with a driz­zle of olive oil, a scat­ter­ing of pars­ley and ex­tra le­mon wedges on the side.

TIP

You can sub­sti­tute pearl bar­ley for pearl cous­cous or rice (to make it a gluten-free dish).

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