I like to sauté the chicken because the browning adds more flavor to the soup. You could boil it, bake it or grill it as well.
1T. olive oil
1/2 c. chopped onion
1 cup chopped celery
2 cups sliced mushrooms
1T. minced garlic (or a little less)
1 cup chopped carrots
1-½ cups chopped cooked skinless chicken breast, (about 7 oz cooked)*
5 cups low sodium chicken broth
2/3-cup pearl barley
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
1/3 cup slivered, toasted almonds
(To toast, heat over medium heat in a non-stick skillet, stirring often untilgolden brown)
Fresh ground pepper and salt to taste
Add oil to a large nonstick saucepan over medium heat. Stir in onions, celery, mushrooms, carrots and garlic and sauté until mushrooms are lightly browned (about 7 minutes).
Stir in chicken and broth and bring to a boil. Stir in the barley, cover the saucepan, and reduce heat to simmer. Cook for about an hour or until the barley is just tender. If you are using quick cooking pearl barley, simmer just15-20 minutes. Turn off the heat and stir in the parsley and almonds. Add salt and pepper to taste.
If you use quick-cooking barley, the soup will cook in about 15-20 minutes as opposed to an hour with pearl barley.
Prairie Health Companion