Hearty Squash and Barley Soup

Barley makes a delicious and simple soup that the whole family will love.  Look for the ‘pearl’ variety of barley that will cook in about 35 minutes. I’ve also added the kale for added nutrients to round out this powerhouse recipe.   



3 tbsp. olive oil ( 45 ml)

1 large onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 leek, (white part only) chopped

1 tbsp. diced pancetta or bacon (15 ml)

1 carrot, diced

1 cup pearl barley  (250 ml)

2 bay leaves

5 sprigs fresh thyme

8 cups chicken stock (2 L)

sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste

1/2 butternut squash, diced

1/2 bunch of kale, leaves only



In a large pot, saute onion in olive oil on medium heat until golden.  Add the garlic, leek, pancetta and carrot and continue to cook for a further 3-4 minutes or until garlic is golden.  Add remaining ingredients, except squash and kale and bring to the boil.  Cover and reduce heat to low.  Simmer, covered for about 30 minutes or until barley is tender.

 Add the squash and simmer for a further 10 minutes uncovered.  Season with salt and pepper add the kale.  Simmer for 5 more minutes until kale is just tender but still green.  Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil just before serving. 

Serves 6

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