Barley Mushroom Soup
I know, this is a big bowl of brown, and a little cream, but I’m here to tell you that this quick barley mushroom soup is so good and flavorful. Over the last few months I have been styling a cookbook that is focused on grains, and have been taking home some of those ideas home for the family. So when I ran across this soup in a Martha magazine I was quick to make it. Martha uses quinoa, which I’m sure would be great, but I like the texture of barley (or a Farro) a bit more in soups (and in everything). As well I added double the amount of lemon juice because I think acid is the key to perking up any soup (that and soy sauce!).
Use this as a base recipe. Not a fan of barley, try Martha’s quinoa, or really rice would work great too. I used chanterelle’s because I had those on hand (mushroom forager beginner), but use a mushroom that you love. Start with half of a lemon and taste, you might like it just as is. But don’t be scared to do the whole lemon, I promise it’s great.
Also, Also! I was nominated for the 2019 Saveur Blog Awards for “Best Photography”! I’m beyond grateful for those who nominated me, and would be so kindly appreciative if you wanted to vote! There are so many amazing bloggers nominated for some pretty cool categories, so take a look and vote!
Barley Mushroom Soup
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for serving
Chanterelle mushrooms (or your mushroom of choice), thinly sliced totally 3 cups
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
Kosher Salt + Freshly Ground Pepper
1 cup barley (farro, quinoa, or brown rice would also work good)
6 cups chicken broth (or vegetable)
2/3 cup grated Pecorino Romano Cheese, plus more for serving
1/2 - 1 lemon, juiced
I like to use a dutch oven for all of my soups, and basically all cooking, but any medium pot will do. Place over medium-high heat and add oil. Once it is shimmering, add mushrooms and onions, season with salt and pepper. Stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are golden brown. If they are darkening too fast turn down the heat. You want a nice golden color too them, but a burnt taste to your soup will be no fun. Cook for about 7-10 minutes. Add grains and continue to occasionally stir, allowing the grains to get toasty, about 2-3 minutes.
Add broth and bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low and keep at a simmer until grains are just cooked. If using quinoa or rice this will be around 12-15 minutes, if using barley or farro, this will be closer to 20 minutes. As you hit 15 minutes, just start taking tester bites to determine doneness. You don’t want the grains to be mush, it’s ok to let them still have some bite.
Remove from the heat and stir in the cheese, lemon juice and season with more salt and pepper. To serve, drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil, and probably more grated cheese (always more cheese).