Contributed by Kate Wilt

Spring may be on the way, but chilly evenings can still make us crave warm, comforting meals. This barley soup is  filling but not heavy, and can be enjoyed by people of all ages. This recipe can be made entirely from food storage, or fresh vegetables can be substituted when available or desired.

[caption id="attachment_1042" align="alignright" width="150"]Barley soup Homemade barley soup[/caption]


1 1/2 cups pearled barley

10 cups water

1/4 cup carrot dices

1/4 cup chopped onion

1/4 cup dehydrated celery pieces

1/4 cup potato slices

1/4 cup imitation ham

2 tsp chicken bouillon

1/2 tsp garlic granules

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pepper


Combine barley and water in a large soup pot, and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce to a simmer and add carrot dices, chopped onions, celery pieces, potato slices, ham, bouillon, and spices.  Add more water as necessary, and cook until barley is tender, about 30 minutes. Adjust seasonings to taste. Yield: 8 servings.


- Serve with a salad and a loaf of homemade bread for a complete meal.

- Freeze dried vegetables can be added to the soup without prior rehydration.

- Less water should be added to the soup if fresh vegetables are utilized instead of freeze-dried.  Only include 8 cups of water if fresh vegetables are used exclusively.

- Be sure to use pearled barley, which cooks faster than regular barley.