barley and black mushroom soup

Low cal/fat
6 servings
⅓ cup Pearl barley
10  Dried Chinese black mushrooms (1/2 oz, abt 1/2 cup)
3 cups Hot water
1½ tablespoon Canola oil
(to 8) shallots or
1 small Onion(s) (1/2 cup finely chopped)
Scallions white part minced greens thinly sliced for garnish
Garlic clove(s), minced
3 cups (to 4 cups) vegetable stock or mushroom stock
¼ cup Dry white vermouth or dry sherry
  Salt and pepper
Carrots cut in 1/4" dice (1 cup)

1. Soak the barley in 4 cups cold water for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight. Drain the barley.

2. Soak the mushrooms in 3 cups hot water for 20-30 minutes or until soft. Remove and discard the mushroom stems, reserving the soaking liquid. thinly slice the mushroom caps.

3. Heat the oil in a large heavy saucepan. Cook the shallot, scallion white, and garlic over medium heat until soft but not brown, 3-4 minutes.

4. Add the mushroom soaking liquid, 3 cups vegetable stock, the barley, vermouth, and salt and pepper and simmer the soup, covered, for 30-40 minutes, or until the barley is soft. Add the carrots during the last 15 minutes. Add stock as necessary to maintain a soupy consistency.

5. To serve, correct the seasoning, adding salt and pepper to taste.

Ladle the soup into bowl and sprinkle with the chopped scallion greens.

High-Flavor, Low-Fat Vegetarian Cooking by Steven Raichlen pg 36 Submitted By DIANE LAZARUS On 10-26-95

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