I’ve seen these bags of soup ingredients Waitrose before, and I thought it would be interesting to try one. The root vegetable and kale soup mix with pearl barley sounded good, so I thought I would give it a try, and make the soup as closely as I could to how they instruct on the packaging.
I started by removing the pearl barley from the packet and sweating the vegetables in a pan with a nob of butter, for about 5 minutes. When nice and glistening, I added the pearl barley and 600ml of Knorr chicken stock. This was my one deviance from the instructions, as I didn’t have any vegetable stock, but you can of course use either.
With the stock in, I left the soup to simmer, with a partially covered lid, for 15 mins and checked that the veg was soft before I removed it from the heat.
Once it was cooked I blitzed it with 3 short bursts in the blender. This didn’t puree it, but it did bring the soup together, without reducing it to baby food.
It was a good texture, though I’m not sure if the pearl barley should be a little softer. Is it meant to be a bit ‘nutty’? The soup has a really rich, deep taste, though it was very much imporved by the addition of salt and pepper. It’s quite sweet, but well balanced and I liked the fact that there were no ‘added’ ingredients, everything was fresh and natural. It’s also very cost efficient – there’s enough soup for large 4 portions and at £1.50 it’s really good value. If you bought individual vegetables and fresh herbs to make this, it would cost a lot more.
I might add some roast chicken to it if there’s any left from today’s roast dinner, for tomorrow’s serving. On the whole, a really nice soup – quick and easy to make, with no wastage. I’d definitely buy it again and it’s a good option for a shop bought/home made soup – and perfect for people who are too lazy to chop veg (like me!).
- While onion
- Pearl Barley
- Garlic puree
- Black pepper
Words and pictures by @ladylavish