I try to fix everything with food. It’s probably the Latvian in me. Everything is somehow about food.
So if one of my boys has a bad day, I want to cook something to make him happy or maybe just take him out for a special meal. Good food makes the tummy happy and feeds the soul.
It’s still hot here, and apparently cold and flu season doesn’t care and isn’t waiting for the cold weather to strike. My son had quite a few days of misery and I made him this soup because I had to do something to help. He’s feeling better and I’ll credit the soup. It’s full of vegetables and I used bone broth, which is said to be amazing for immune support.
When my boys were little, they would always pick out the vegetables in soup. SO frustrating. I came up with a way for them to eat the vegetables and add flavor to soup without dumping in a ton of salt.
The vegetables that you see in the bowl are decoy vegetables. My son recently asked me to buy some decoy cookies. I had no idea what he meant. I had just baked fresh, homemade cookies and he realized his dad was coming home for the weekend. He knew those cookies didn’t stand a chance and wanted me to buy some Chips Ahoy or Oreo cookies to distract my husband from the REAL cookies. Nice.
That’s the same idea in this soup. There’s vegetables, but they distract you from the real vegetables that are already cooked and pureed into the broth. It adds color, flavor, and ensures that the kids eat their veggies.
Barley is one of the oldest yet one of the most neglected grains. It is rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals, including copper. Besides that, it has a great chewy texture and helps you feel fuller longer than other grains. It takes over an hour to cook, but it’s worth it.
This is my virtual bowl of get better soup to you.
- 2 chicken breasts
- 4 celery stalks, diced and divided in half
- 3 carrots, diced, divided in half
- 1/2 onion, diced
- 32 oz bone broth (chicken, or regular stock)
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 1/2 cup dried barley
- dried or fresh herbs of choice
- Season chicken breasts with salt and pepper and cook in a dutch oven until just done.
- Remove, cover, and refrigerate for later.
- To the same pot, add half the celery, carrots, and all of the onion. Do not brown.
- Slowly saute and add 2 cups broth.
- Simmer about 30 mins, until vegetables are soft.
- Puree in blender.
- Simmer bone broth, 1 cup of water, barley, and remaining half of celery and carrot for 1.5 hours.
- Add vegetable base and season with herbs, salt, and pepper as needed.
- Dice chicken and add to soup to serve. Don't overcook or chicken will be dry.