TOMATO, LENTIL, AND BARLEY SOUP
by Nava Atlas
As an antidote to the too-much-food syndrome of Thanksgiving weekend, here’s a nourishing main-dish soup using basic, low-fat, and inexpensive ingredients. Serve with a fresh bread and a colorful green salad to complete an easy meal. You’ll enjoy leftovers of this soup for days to come; it makes a good thermos soup to take to work or school; and it freezes well, too. Thanks to Laurie Fahrner, who writes the blog Mehitable Days, for the photos. Recipe adapted from Vegan Soups and Hearty Stews for All Seasons.
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 to 3 cloves garlic, minced
8 ounces raw brown or green lentils, rinsed
3/4 cup raw pearl barley, rinsed
2 large celery stalks, diced
2 medium carrots, peeled and sliced
1 cup shredded white cabbage
28-ounce can salt-free diced tomatoes, undrained
1/4 cup dry red wine, optional
1 to 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar, to taste
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
2 teaspoons salt-free seasoning such as Spike or Mrs. Dash,
or more, to taste
2 teaspoons paprika
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Heat the oil in a soup pot. Add the onions and sauté over medium-low heat until translucent. Add the garlic and continue to sauté until both are golden.
Add all the remaining ingredients (except the salt and pepper) plus 6 cups water. Bring to a gentle boil, then lower the heat. Cover and simmer gently for about 45 to 55 minutes, or until the lentils, barley, and vegetables are tender. Stir occasionally and add more water if the soup becomes too thick.
Season with salt and pepper. If time allows, let the soup stand off the heat for an hour or so, then heat through before serving. This soup thickens as it stands; add water as needed and adjust the seasonings