I know, it's summer, so soup isn't really on everyone's top ten list. But my neighbor gave me a bunch of kale and I always have beans, so I thought this would be an easy weeknight dinner. And it was. And it was really good.
I used two separate recipes as a starting point and combined the things I liked about each one. One recipe was from Real Simple and the other was from our newspaper. This was my first time using barley and I'm a fan. I'll definitely cook with it again.
Here's my version:
White Bean and Barley Soup with Kale and Rosemary
2 Tbsp olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 onion, diced
8 C liquid (I used 2 C veggie broth, 2 C chicken broth and 4 C water)
1 C pearl barley
2 15-oz cans cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1 bunch kale, chopped, about 8 cups
1 to 2 Tbsp fresh rosemary, chopped
Salt and pepper
Fresh squeezed lemon
Shaved Parmesan, plus 1 piece of rind
Extra-virgin olive oil
Heat oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add onion, celery and garlic and cook until tender, 6 to 8 minutes.
Adds the broth, beans, rosemary, kale, Parmesan rind, and barley. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and simmer until barley is tender but still toothsome, about 30 minutes. Ladle into bowls, squeeze with fresh lemon, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with Parmesan.
We had ours with a yummy loaf of bread with olive oil and vinegar for dunking.
Here's dinner in my bowl: