Mushroom Barley Soup
1/2 lb. Italian sausage (optional)
1 yellow onion, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
8-10 oz.. sliced mushrooms (cremini or baby bella)
1 Roma tomato, chopped
6 c. vegetable broth
3/4 c. barley (soaked)
1 package frozen chopped spinach
salt and pepper
Remove sausage from casings and brown in a 6-8 qt stock pot, crumbling with a wooden spoon. Pour off some oil if desired. Add onions to same pan and saute 3-5 minutes until softened. Then add carrot and saute 3 minutes more. Add mushrooms, tomato, broth and turn up heat to high. Drain barley and add to pot. Cook 30 minutes until barley is cooked. Stir in spinach and simmer until spinach is heated through. Season with salt and pepper.
Time: 30 minutes. Serves 6.