Pearl barley is a nutritious grain most commonly associated with soups. Its chewy texture gives substance, making it an ideal winter soup base.

The recipe is vegan, but I like to add a dollop of sour cream for extra richness (making it then vegetarian).

Pearl barley (grain) with the combination of soya (legume) from the miso and Braggs Aminos or Tamari makes a complete protein.

• ½ cup pearl barley

• 2 bay leaves

• 2 litres boiling water

• 2 Tbsp olive oil

• 1 tsp hing/asafoetida

• Freshly ground black pepper

• 1½ tsp salt

• 1 cup each of grated carrot, beetroot and parsnip

• 1 stick celery, sliced

• 2 cups cabbage, chopped

• 4 Tbsp Braggs Aminos or Tamari

• 1 Tbsp sesame seed oil

• 2 Tbsp miso, light-coloured such as Aka or Shiro

Handful fresh coriander or parsley, chopped

Rinse barley and place in soup pot with water and bay leaves. Bring to boil, then reduce to simmer until barley is tender.

Add olive oil, hing, pepper, salt, grated vegetables and celery to barley and cook a further 10 minutes. Add cabbage, Braggs or Tamari and sesame oil, and continue to cook until cabbage is tender.

Mix miso to a paste with 2 Tbsp of water, then add to soup with coriander.

Blend to serve. Do not re-boil.

Miso Enriched Barley and Vegetable Soup

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