I have been making this soup for a decade now and it has become one of my comfort foods. I always make sure that I have some in the freezer in case I am feeling under the weather or having a week that is too busy for healthy cooking.
Saute 1/2 a chopped onion and 1 clove of minced garlic in 1 Tbsp. olive oil for 5 minutes or until tender.
4 cups (or more) of vegetable stock
2 cups fresh or canned diced tomatoes
1/3 cup pearl barley
1/3 cup green lentils (known in the real world as split peas)
1/3 cup yellow lentils (known in the real world as split peas)
1 tsp. or more of dried oregano
1 tsp. or more of dried basil
2 bay leaves
1 cup of chopped vegetables (whatever you have on hand. I usually use carrots, zucchini, celery…)
Simmer, covered for about 45 minutes. Then add:
1/2 cup or more of sliced fresh spinach leaves
2 Tbsp. black strap molasses
1 Tbsp. cider vinegar
1/2 – 1 tsp. freshly ground cracked pepper
Cook for another 15 minutes. I like to add hot sauce into my bowl for some extra kick, but it is dependent on personal taste. This soup can be frozen in individual portions using small freezer bags or frozen in a larger freezer bag or container for a family meal.