For me, soup is soul food, comfort food. It’s the culinary equivalent of a soothing hug. It’s also an excellent way of getting a healthy dose of vegetables in your diet! This is a firm favourite in our household.
3 thick slices of gammon, finely diced
Handful of pearl barley
Handful of bulger wheat
2 medium onions, finely chopped
1 small courgette, finely chopped
1 leek, finely chopped
1 medium sweet potato, finely chopped
3 medium white potatoes, finely chopped
1/2 a red pepper, finely chopped
1 large stick of celery, finely chopped
1 large clove of garlic, crushed or 1 teaspoon of garlic paste
2 chicken (or vegetable) stock cubes
Salt & pepper to taste
2 dessert spoons of light olive oil
I prefer to cook a 750g gammon joint in a big stock pan of salted water (usually takes an hour). After joint has cooked, remove from pan, drain and rest while retaining the water in the pan. Add the stock cubes then set aside.
In a separate wide shallow frying pan, heat the oil over a low to medium heat and add the onions and leek. Fry until transparent then add the courgette, celery and pepper. Fry for 2-3 minutes or so. Then add the garlic and fry for a further minute.
Remove frying pan from heat and put the stock pot on the heat. Add the vegetables, bulger wheat and pearl barley. Stir in. Then add the potatoes and diced gammon and season. Put the lid on and simmer for an hour or so. Leave to stand then when you’re about to serve, season to taste if needed (I find that the flavours develop during standing time and I rarely need to season again).
Serve with warmed crusty bread and enjoy!
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