Leafy Greens + Barley Yogurt Soup


Leafy Greens + Barley Yogurt Soup



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6 cups spinach, coarsely chopped
2 cups swiss chard, coarsely chopped
1 cup pearl barley, rinsed, or soft wheat berries
1/4 teaspoon sugar
cold water, as needed
7-to-8 cups hot water
24-to-28 oz strained-yogurt (Greek-style yogurt, labneh)
1 jumbo egg
1 teaspoon all purpose flour flour
6 oz tareh/tara (Persian wild leek greens), or garlic chives
3+ oz cilantro leaves, about a bunch
3+ oz parsley leaves, about a bunch
.75 oz fresh tarragon or dill, about a handful
1/4 cup oil
6-to-8 cloves garlic, sliced

Prepare leafy greens.  Thoroughly wash spinach and swiss chard.  Dry on kitchen towels, coarsely chop and set aside.

Cook grains.  Rinse barley in cold water and transfer into a medium pot.  Add sugar and enough water to cover grains by 3-inches.   Bring to a fast boil then cook covered on medium-low heat for about 50 minutes.  If using wheat berries, you might want to consider cooking them under pressure for at least 30 minutes; they tend to take longer to soften.  Ones grains are done to your liking, drain, rinse in cold water and set aside.

Prepare soup base.  In a stockpot, whisk egg until homogeneous, sift in flour and whisk once more until lump free.  Add in strained yogurt and whisk until smooth.  Continue to whisk as you slowly temper in two cups of hot water. Turn on stove to medium-low heat and bring contents of pot to an almost boil; stirring occasionally.  Add in cooked barley and remaining 5-to-6 cups of hot water.  Simmer on low until heated through.

Add spinach and swiss chard to soup base and continue to cook for 8 minutes.  Meanwhile chop the tareh, cilantro, parsley and tarragon and add to soup.  Continue to cook for another 5-to-10 minutes until greens begin to wilt.

In a small saucepan, sauté garlic in oil on medium-low heat for a minute or two until fragrant.  Mix in half a cup of the soup then drop everything back into the stockpot.  Gently stir to combine.  Turn off heat.


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