Barley & Vegetable Soup Recipe
1 cup pearl barley
8 cups beef stock or water, or a combination of both
3 tbsp olive oil
2 carrots, finely chopped
2 celery sticks, finely chopped
1 leek, thinly sliced
1 large potato, finely chopped
½ cup diced beef
1 bay leaf
43 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
1 small fresh rosemary sprig
Salt and ground black pepper to taste
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, to serve
Pick over the barley and discard any stones or other particles. Wash the barley in cold water, then place it in a bowl, add cold water to cover and leave to soak for at least 3 hours.
Drain the barley and place it in a large pan with the stock or water. Bring to the boil, lower the heat and simmer for an hour. Skim off any scum.
Stir in the oil, carrots, celery, leek, potato and beef and add the bay leaf, parsley and rosemary. If necessary, add more water; the ingredients should be covered by at least 1 inch. Bring to the boil, and then simmer for until the vegetables and barley are very tender
Season the soup to taste with salt and pepper. Ladle the soup into warmed soup bowls and serve immediately with grated Parmesan cheese for sprinkling.