Barley Soup With Hearty Greens



  1. Put the oil in a pot over medium-high heat.
  2. When hot, add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until it's soft, 3 to 5 minutes.
  3. Stir in the garlic, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and cook 1 minute more.
  4. Add the barley and cook, stirring constantly to coat every grain in the fat, until it starts to toast and stick to the pot, 3 to 5 minutes.
  5. Add the stock and bring to a boil, then lower the heat so the liquid bubbles steadily.
  6. Cover the pot and cook, stirring occasionally, until the barley is almost tender but still with a tiny bit of crunch, 20 to 25 minutes.
  7. Add up to 1 cup water if the soup looks too dry.
  8. Separate the leaves of the greens from the stems using a knife or shears.
  9. Keep the leaves and stems separate and roughly chop both.
  10. When the barley is just tender, turn the heat to medium-high, uncover the pot, and add the stems.
  11. Bring the soup to a boil, add the leaves, then lower the heat so the mixture bubbles steadily again.
  12. Cover and cook until the barley is fully tender but not mushy and the greens are bright colored and tender, another 5 to 10 minutes.
  13. Taste, adjust the seasoning, add another 1 or 2 tablespoons olive oil, and serve.