Wednesday, October 5, 2011

chicken barley soup... 45 minutes

the goods:

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
4 carrots, diced small
4 celery stalks, diced small
1 medium yellow onion, diced small
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
5 sprigs thyme
1 cup quick-cooking barley
5 ounces baby spinach (5 cups)

In a large Dutch oven or heavy pot, heat oil over medium-high. Add carrots, celery, and onion. Cook until just tender, 8 minutes. Add chicken, season with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring, until chicken is opaque at edges, about 2 minutes. Add broth and thyme and bring to a boil. Stir in barley. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer until barley is tender and chicken is cooked through, 10 to 12 minutes. Add spinach and cook until wilted, 1 minute. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve.

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