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Mushroom Barley Soup


I’ve been cooking but haven’t had the time or inclination to document. However, I find myself referring to past recipes I’ve posted and realize the personal value of doing so…so here we go…

In my head, I already knew what I wanted this soup to taste like. I wanted a deep mushroom flavor that would make up for a lack of meat and a substantial carb that could stand up to a few reheatings without getting mushy. Rice and pasta get too mushy too quickly; I liked the barley in my lamb stew so I simply searched the internet for a mushroom barley soup.

I liked the pictures I saw on The Shiksa In the Kitchen. However, the recipe as written used too many pots so I adjusted the instructions for a one-pot recipe. I also prefer my recipes written as whole measurements (2 carrots vs. 1 cup of carrots) so adjusted those measurements as well as the liquids required. This will be going into my regular soup rotation!

Mushroom Barley Soup (adapted from The Shiksa In the Kitchen)

  • 6 dried shitake mushrooms
  • 1.5 lb white or brown mushrooms, cleaned & sliced
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 carrots, peeled & diced
  • 3 stalks celery, diced
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 8 cups chicken stock (or veggie if you want to be totally veg)
  • 1.25 cups pearl barley
  • salt & pepper to taste
  1. Soak the shitake mushrooms in 3 cups of boiling hot water. Cover and set aside.
  2. In a large heavy-bottomed pot, add some oil and sautee the sliced mushrooms in two batches. Don’t stir too much and allow the slices to brown a bit. You’re building flavor! Don’t forget to add salt & pepper to taste. Set the sauteed mushrooms aside.
  3. In the same pot, heat some more oil and sautee your onions & garlic for ~5 minutes until it starts to brown and cook down.
  4. Add the carrots & celery.
  5. While the vegetables are cooking, drain the shitake mushrooms but be sure to reserve the soaking liquid. Dice the shitake mushrooms and toss them into the pot.
  6. Once the vegetables are cooked nicely, stir in the soaking liquid. If there is gritty stuff at the bottom, strain it with a coffee filter or just pour carefully so the bulk of it doesn’t get into your soup.
  7. Once the mushroom stock gets hot and bubbly, add the sauteed mushrooms, stock, barley and bay leaves. Bring everything to a boil and reduce to a simmer for ~2 hours or until the barley is cooked through.
  8. Season to taste.


Categories: food, soup, vegetarian Tags: ,
  1. February 8, 2013 at 12:07 pm

    Wish I saw this earlier in the morning. It is now lunchtime and I’m hungry! Maybe tomorrow?

  2. February 8, 2013 at 12:07 pm

    Wow! I’m always looking for new ideas for shiitake hotpots! I must give this one a try!

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