Mushroom, Barley and Lentil Soup

With the grain theme in mind, Minoo prepared a Mushroom, Barley and Lentil Soup in the Gilmore Park Church Community Kitchen.

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The Mushroom, Barley and Lentil Soup is a one pot meal that are very hearty and certainly very filling. Minoo made it rather thick and it’s more like a porridge to me. This will be a vegetarian dish if you use vegetable broth instead of chicken stock.

Ingredients

  • 4 cups good chicken or beef stock
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 cup pearl barley
  • 1 cup mixed lentils
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 1 cup diced carrot
  • 1 cup diced parsnip
  • 1/2 cup cloud ear fungus, reconstituted and chopped
  • 1 pound fresh button mushroom (or any kind of your preference), sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup dill, chives or parsley, chopped

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Please note: parsley should be in place of the cilantro; ingredient got mixed up.

Source: this recipe is adapted from Kevin Turner

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All About Grains

Minoo had selected a theme of grains to introduce to the community kitchens. She brought a variety of grains to the Gilmore Park Church Community Kitchen to share with us.

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We learned that we can incorporate various grains in our diet beside the staple rice or oats that we are familiar with. We can add grains into our soup, stew or salad.

Here is an article which Minoo shared with us:

Grains are the mainstay of human sustenance. About half the world’s arable land is devoted to the cultivation of grains in some form or other, and 80% of the calories that human consume come from grains. Civilization as we know came into being as we transformed from wandering hunter-gatherers into farmers with secure and stable communities nourished by the fruits of our labours.

Grains are amazing plants, developed from weed like plants, grasses actually, that were able to spring up from any odd patch of ground on which a seed happens to fall. Among their many characteristics that make them so valuable is spacing, they take up little room, sending up stems topped by crowded spikes of nutrition packed seed kernels. They mature in just a few months and all of the seeds ripen simultaneously. They are easily prepared for cooking, even with primitive tools. Best of all, grains are often dry enough when fully ripe or after a brief parching in the sun to be stored without going moldy, so a good harvest ensures a year long supply of food.

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