Posted on: Saturday, March 28, 2009

Chickpea, Tomato, & Barley Soup

Chickpea, Tomato, & Barley Soup

Did You Know? Grains found in pits and pyramids in Egypt indicate that barley was cultivated there more than 5000 years ago. The most ancient glyph or pictograph found for barley is dated about 3000 B.C. In fact, Historians report that up until the 16th century, barley was the most important grain on the European continent. It was also used as currency and as a measuring standard.

Trying to keep my promise of cooking more from the magazines I subscribe to, this next recipe is from a past issue of Body and Soul, a division of Martha Stewart. If you're not familiar with the magazine, I definitely recommend checking it out. It's full of useful health and wellness information, workouts, recipes, and sustainable living advice, but with that Martha Stewart flair we all love. The pictures are beautiful, and the companies and products featured somehow seem to make their way onto my grocery list each and every week.

This particular soup recipe has become a family staple ever since I first made it many months ago. I don't know why I never shared it here, but I'm guessing it's because I never got around to photographing it before the pot was empty. I'm always looking for thick and hearty soups to prepare. Something that will fill me up on its own, and not as a side to some other dish. With 19 grams of protein, and 12 grams of fiber, this soup is nutritious and satisfying.



Chickpea, Tomato, & Barley Soup

The original recipe calls for spelt, but I substituted that with barley since its what I had on hand. We all like the flavor so much, I have yet to make the spelt version. That, and I've never seen spelt offered at any of my local grocery stores. I also top it off with cilantro instead of parsley. Mainly because of my recent obsession with this wonderful herb. Other than that, I followed the recipe pretty much to the T. Starting any soup with a mirepoix is almost a guarantee that you'll end up with a flavorful bowl. And the creamy chickpeas work wonderfully with the nutty barley and the spicy tomato broth. It also makes for great leftovers. Just make sure you have some extra broth on hand, because it thickens up substantially in the fridge. Served with a nice salad and fresh loaf of bread, lunch could not have been better.

Chickpea, Tomato, & Barley Soup

Chickpea, Tomato, & Barley Soup
Adapted from Body and Soul Magazine

1 cup barley
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 carrots, halved lengthwise and cut into 1/2-inch lengths
2 celery stalks, diced
4 garlic cloves, chopped
Coarse salt and ground pepper
2 bay leaves
2 teaspoons sweet paprika
1 teaspoon ground cumin
4 cups vegetable broth
1 can (14 1/2 ounces) crushed tomatoes
1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup chopped cilantro, for garnish

Rinse barley clean under running water. Place in a medium bowl and cover with cold water. Let soak for 1 hour; drain.

In a 5-quart Dutch oven or large soup pot, heat oil over medium. Add onion, carrot, celery, and garlic. Season with salt and pepper and cook for 5 minutes. Add bay leaves, paprika, cumin, barley, broth, and 1 cup of water. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook for 30 minutes or until barley is tender.

Add tomatoes and chickpeas and cook for 20 minutes or until flavors have blended. Discard bay leaves. Sprinkle with chopped cilantro before serving.


35 comments:

  1. that's weird to think of barley as used as currency...so long ago.
    I love chickpeas and always looking for new ways to use them. Never thought to use them in a tomato based soup. Clever and I love this.

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  2. Barley must be in the air! I just put up a barley salad....The soup looks great, love the chickpea addition. Thanks!

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  3. a lady named dawn is in all my math classes, she lives on the vineyard and commutes to bsc. i love her.

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  4. Hayley, this soup looks so good! I've never actually cooked with spelt myself, but I love barely, and I really love chick peas. It's perfect!

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  5. I ADORE Body + Soul magazine - great recipe choice!!

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  6. I really love barley, but you don't see many recipes that use it. I can't wait to try this.

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  7. It looks so good and filling.

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  8. My grandma makes a great soup with barley, but this one has tomato, so it wins for me!

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  9. This looks delicious, I love chikpeas, and have never had them in a soup.. YUM!

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  10. wow!! I love barley, I eat it every other day, and this sounds like another great barley recipe to try! looks ultra-satisfying.

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  11. Oh yum! I love soup with barley. I need to make this. Great pictures!

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  12. this looks amazing! totally up my alley :)

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  13. Wow, how did you know that something like this was exactly what I was craving? ;) Sounds perfect for dinner tonight, thanks for the recipe!

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  14. I can't wait to make this soup..Im going out right now to buy the ingredients. Ill let you know how it turns out. Thanks.Figtreeapps

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  15. Weird coincidence--I just made a tomato chickpea barley soup tonight too! Must be something in the air. I loooovvveee the combo--barley is so delicious!

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  16. This looks fantastic! I'm definitely bookmarking it!

    NAOmni

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  17. I've been looking for a good barley recipe as I would like to work more meatless meals into our weekly line up. This sounds perfect as I'll eat anything with tomatoes!

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  18. That soup looks good and sounds nice and healthy!

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  19. Chickpeas are our friends. We love and adore them. This is wonderful. So hearty.

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  20. Today is rainy and grey and I think this would be the perfect soup!

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  21. I think I would love Body & Soul, but with 2 little ones I barely have time to read the 3 subscriptions to other mags that I have.
    Thanks for the recipe, though, look forward to more.

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  22. My BF loves a good soup and this one looks so hearty. He also loves cilantro so I will be surprising him soon with this recipe. Thanks.

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  23. This was the perfect soup for a cold day, plus the ingredients are all straight out of the pantry... no trips to the store!

    I added a cup or so of spinach just before serving (long enough to wilt) and an additional can of tomato sauce.

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  24. I love the colour of this soup. Yum!

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  25. Yes! All of these ingredients are right up my alley.

    I have a STACK of magazines sitting next to my couch. For some odd reason, magazines always end up last on my to do list!

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  26. I love barley, and this soup looks so wonderful! I've been using it in place of arborio rice in risotto lately and it really is delicious!

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  27. I just made this and it's amazing and really filling and just so darn healthy! Thanks!

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  28. i am so trying this! love all the flavors in this soup!

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  29. Love the color in this one, and I think you made the right call using barley, it's my favourite grain in soups.

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  30. My husband & I love it!! I adore barley: it is so healthty & yummie too! Your soup looks so delicious!
    MMMMMMM....!

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  31. This soup is 100% gorgeous!

    It sounds fantastic, especially with the recipe changes that you suggested.

    Thanks for the inspiration - yum!

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  32. I made this recipe last week (had to after seeing the pictures) and it was fantastic! I used vermicelli noodles instead of barley, left out the celery, and added fresh spinach. I'm making it again tonight. Thanks for posting!

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  33. Just found your blog and this recipe- Im printing it and making it today! Thanks...

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