At the first touch of cooler autumn air, I bring out the soups and stews in full force, in particular this Tuscan Chicken and Barley Soup. They are some of my favorite dishes to make and I wait on pins and needles until the weather is just right. I love the fact that there are endless combinations to play with, and they are hearty and healthy meals. This soup (as most soup recipes I whip up) came from cleaning out my freezer, refrigerator, and pantry and making a delicious meal out of it. That’s another one of the wonderful things about soup, it’s great to use up any leftover veggies or herbs that may be on their way out. As the weather starts to become more autumnal in the weeks to come, curl up with a big bowl of this warm soup and enjoy the pre-fall excitement!
- 2 large boneless chicken breasts, roasted and shredded with a fork
- 2 slices of bacon-diced
- 1/2 cup diced celery
- 1/2 cup diced carrot
- 1/2 a medium onion-diced
- 2 cloves of minced garlic
- 1 14.5 OZ can of garbanzo beans
- 1/4 cup oil packed sundried tomatoes-jullienned or diced
- 1 tbsp minced rosemary
- 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 2 cups water
- 3/4 cup of quick barley
- 1/4 cup Kalamata olives-halved and pits removed if neccessary
- 1/4 cup torn basil leaves
- Grated Parmesan to serve
- Sauté bacon in a heavy large Dutch oven over medium-high heat until crispy and fat is rendered. Remove bacon and add onions, carrots, celery, garlic, sundried tomatoes, basil, rosemary, crushed red pepper and oregano to the bacon fat. Sauté until vegetables begin to soften, about 10 minutes. Add stock, water, chicken, and beans. Bring soup to boil. Reduce heat and simmer until vegetables are tender and flavors blend, about 20 minutes.
- Add barley and olives to soup and simmer until tender, about 10 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Top with the reserved bacon and some grated parmesan cheese to serve.
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Monday 28th of September 2015
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