Saw this recipe about a year ago in Food & Wine magazine, and recently my vegetarian husband re-alerted me to it and decided with the cold weather and snow, it would be the perfect winter warming grub! I made a couple of minor changes to the recipe, simply to suit my personal tastes. You can do the same! It's so adaptable and super easy to make. It turned out really delicious, mild but distinct flavors (love the sweetness of the parsnips) and the nutmeg at the end sends it right into the most earthiest dimension of taste!
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 large onion, thinly sliced
2 leeks, white and tender green parts only,
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup pearled barley
9 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
4 cups water
10-15 thyme sprigs
2 bay leaves
1 1/2 pounds celery root, peeled and cut
into 1/2-inch cubes
1 pound parsnips, peeled and cut into 1/2-
Salt and freshly ground pepper
10oz baby spinach
1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1. In a large pot, heat the oil. Add the
onion, leeks and garlic and cook over
moderate heat, stirring occasionally,
until tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in the
barley. Add the vegetable broth, water,
thyme and bay leaves and bring to a
boil. Add the celery root and parsnips
and season with salt and pepper.
Simmer over moderately low heat until
the barley and root vegetables are
tender, about 40 minutes.
2. Stir in the spinach and nutmeg and
simmer for 5 minutes. Season the soup
with quite a bit of salt and pepper and serve.