I have been thinking about the menu for my upcoming Purim seuda (feast). Admittedly, I check my pantry for chometz (leavened products unsuitable for Passover) before Purim and many of my seuda recipes are designed to use those products. It helps me use up those products that I will need to discard, donate or finish before Pesach (Passover).
One of those chometz products is barley. I use it in the cholent, but not for much else. And, I had two bags in my pantry, much more than I could use in the next few weeks. So, barley came out of my pantry and created this delicious and oh, so simple mushroom-barley soup.
This crockpot soup uses a few simple wholesome ingredients tossed right into the crockpot. There is no sauteing in advance. Just put it up in the morning and come home to a delicious, hearty and flavorful soup in the evening. The barley creates a starchy texture that contrasts so well with the smooth earthiness of the mushrooms. The onions and celery round out the soup so perfectly.
And, you will have less barley to contend with before Pesach.
2 packages mushrooms, sliced (try baby bella)
6 stalks celery, sliced
1 onion, diced
3/4 cup barley
1 tablespoon salt
dash of pepper
6 quart crockpot
Toss mushrooms, celery, onion barley, salt and pepper into the crockpot and stir. Fill crockpot two-thirds to the top with water. Cook on high from morning to evening, at least six hours.
For an even easier preparation, substitute 2 large cans mushrooms for the fresh mushrooms.
For a deeper flavor, substitute vegetable or chicken stock for some of the water.
This soup freezes extremely well. Cool soup and decant into freezer-safe containers or freezer-type zipper bags. Just defrost and reheat. Add fresh herbs and water if necessary to freshen it up.
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