I nearly called this "Post-Holiday Legume Barley Soup" but eventually opted for savory because that word always makes me want to eat anything it describes. But the inspiration for this soup came from the ham bone and gallon or more of turkey broth sitting in our fridge, accompanied by very few other veggies, and a friend coming to dinner - all of which was the result of the recent holiday.
Don’t be intimidated by the length of this ingredient list. If you look closely you'll see that it is mostly herbs and seasoning, most of which you probably have on hand. Again, I had a few more fresh herbs on hand because of the recent holiday, and I generally do find them far superior to dried - but as this is not meant to be a recipe that sends you to the grocery store, dried and/or a couple substitutions will do just fine (majoram would have worked well I think). Also, the recipe could easily be done with only Turkey (or chicken) stock, or only a ham bone, but I had both and found the combination worked nicely.
We ate the soup with Michael's freshly baked sourdough bread. It was his first loaf of sourdough, which he made from a starter he's been patiently bringing to life with wild yeast for the last two weeks. The combination was fantastic. Enjoy!
Savory Legume-Barley Soup
1 ¼ cup dry Black Eyed Peas
1 cup dry Green Lentils
½ cup Pearl Barley
6 cups water
3 cups Turkey Stock
1 Meaty Ham Bone
3 sprigs Thyme – torn off the stem
½ sprig Rosemary, minced
5 leaves Sage, finely chopped
8 black peppercorns
Dash ground cloves
1 Tbsp brown sugar
Hearty dash dried parsley
Salt and pepper to taste
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
8 oz. mushrooms, sliced and chopped
¼ cup dry red wine
I brought the black eyed peas to a boil and let them sit a few minutes(I’m not sure this was necessary, but they seem like they need a little more cooking than lentils, and in the end, everything came to a good amount of cooked, but not too mushy). Drain the black eyed peas, and add the rest of the first list of ingredients.
Bring the soup to a boil, then let simmer. Meanwhile sauté the onions in the olive oil 5 or 6 minutes, until they start to become translucent. Then add garlic and mushrooms. Sauté until mushrooms are tender (a minute or two) then add the red wine (1/4 c. is a rough estimation) and let it simmer about 10 minutes, until most of the alcohol has evaporated. Add this to the soup mixture. (Normally I’m a one-pot soup girl all the way, and this could be done in the soup pot ahead of time before the rest of the ingredients are added. I just didn’t plan that far ahead and did it after the beans were simmering – it can go either way depending on if you’d rather save a pan to clean, or time for the soup to simmer).
Let the soup simmer for an hour or more. Add more liquid as necessary – it can be more of a stew or a soup depending on preference and occasion. Taste occasionally and add more salt or pepper if it needs it. (The amounts here will depend largely on how salted your stock was to begin with). After about an hour and a half, remove the hambone. When cool enough to handle, remove all the ham from the bone, dice it, and add back to soup.Let me know if you do make it and what you think!
And if anyone does read this and asks for it, I'll also share my next most recent invention - sweet potato and stewed hen curry, which came out quite nicely as well.