1. Heat the oil in a large pot. Add the bay leaf and onion and fry until the onion begins to brown. Add the garlic and ginger and fry for 2 more minutes.
5. Ladle into individual bowls and top with a pinch of fresh basil.
My Curried Vegetable Barley Soup recipe is based on the traditional recipe but is enhanced with pearled barley and Indian spices. The barley is boiled in the broth so it absorbs flavor as well as water. Barley has a deliciously mild flavor and chewy texture. It is only natural that I include it in a soup recipe. My few of my favorite vegetables are added to give a variety of color to the soup. The broth is flavored with a homemade curry powder mixture to give it a combination rich, exotic flavor with a tiny bit of heat. To make the soup even healthier, I add a bit of chopped kale during the last steps to add color and texture.
2. Add the broth plus 3 cups of water. Bring to a boil. Rinse the barley with water and drain.
3. When the water is boiling add the barley and reduce the heat to low. Partially cover the pot with the lid and simmer for 30 minutes. Simmer for an additional 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
4. Add the carrots, cauliflower, green beans, bell pepper and spices. Simmer for 5 minutes then add the chopped tomatoes and potato. Simmer for another 10 minutes or until the vegetables are cooked. Stir in the chopped kale and cook for 5 more minutes. Adjust the salt as needed.
1 1/2 Tbs olive oil
1 bay leaf
1 onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2-inch piece ginger, minced
2 quarts low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
3 cups water
1 cup pearl barley
2 carrots, cut into 1/2-inch coins
2 cups small cauliflower florets
1 russet potato, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 cup green beans, cut into 1-inch pieces
1/4 cup chopped red bell pepper
3 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
1/2 tsp ground fennel
1/2 tsp ground fenugreek
1-1 1/2 tsp red chile powder
3/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 tsp salt
3 plum tomatoes, chopped
1 cup kale, chopped
1/4 cup fresh basil, julienned