Vegetable Barley Soup and Paintballs

This past weekend I went paintballing. You heard me correctly – paintballing.  A lot of my random experiences involve either a semi-persuasive friend or a groupon, and this delightful adventure involved both.

I’m generally not a huge fan of guns or violence. I don’t usually like when small bullet-esque bruise-forming balls filled with paint are being pelted at me. I have never even owned a camouflage piece of clothing. Despite these obstacles, I had a grand time. Aside from my constant girly shrills and unexpected and horrific potty-mouth, I feel like I did pretty well.

Will I be going again? Probably not.

Do I regret going? Absolutely not – although a few purple-green-black-blue spots on my chest/arms/back/butt probably regret that I went.

What is the best way to finish off a fantastic weekend of paint-balling? Surely its a bowl of vegetable barley soup.

And don’t call me Shirley…




Vegetable Barley Soup
Source: Care2

2.5 quarts vegetable broth (or water if you want a more blah-blah-blah soup)
1C barley
1-2T olive oil
1 onion, diced
3 stalks celery, chopped
3 carrots, chopped
1 clove garlic
2 medium potatoes, scrubbed and chopped
1 bay leaf
1 30 oz can diced tomatoes
1.5C kale (or alternate green – chard, spinach, collards)
2tsp dried basil
salt, pepper to taste

In a large pot, bring broth (or water) to a boil. Rinse barley under water. Add to boiling water, along with bay leaf. Simmer 30-40 minutes. Note: it will not be completely tender at this point, which is a-okay. It will keep cooking with the rest of the veggies.

While barley is simmering, clean and chop vegetables. Add 1 to 2T of olive oil to a sautee pan. Sautee onion until translucent. Add celery, carrot, and garlic and continue to cook for about 3-5 minutes until vegetables start to soften. Set aside.

When barley has been simmering for 30-40 minutes, add in onion/carrot/celery/garlic mixture. Let this cook for about 15 minutes. Then add in potatoes, tomatoes (with juice), and basil. Continue to cook for about 30 minutes, until potatoes are tender. Add kale just before serving

Pull out the bay leaf, unless your into that sort of thing.

Adjust seasonings – and wahoo! Soup that is perfect for your bruised, battered, and paint-balled body.

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