Recipe: Barley soup

When it gets colder outside and we can already feel that autumn is comming, then there is nothing better than a big hot pot of soup. One of my favourites definitely is the barley soup. Especially when it's cold and wet outside, this soup warms you up - and it tastes like heaven. 

I grew up at a farm and most of the time I was on my way with my grandfather the whole morning, even when it was raining, but then it was really nice at lunch to warm ourselves with a delicious barley soup. This recipe will definitely warm you up when it is cold and raining outside. 


Tips for preparation:

When preparing this recipe, keep in mind that you can put anything into the soup that you like. For our variation we use many root vegetables, pearl barley and smoked meat. But you can use any vegetables you like. Due to the intensive taste of the smoked meat, you should not use too many spices. You can always put some salt into your soup after you finished cooking it, if you think it isn't spicy enough. Another important fact when making barley soup is that it should only simmer lightly, so that the soup does not get murky. However, the time you let your soup simmer can variate. Pearl barley is a product of nature, and every pearl barley is a little bit different. The best way to cook, is to taste the soup every once in a while. The dish is perfect, when the soup is getting a little bit thicker, and the barley is still firm. You can reduce the time of cooking, when you soak the pearl barley in water the day before. 

Ingredients for 4-6 persons: 

  • 200 g pearl barley
  • 200 g smoked meat, cut in small dices
  • Root vegetables as you like (for example 2 spring onions or leek, 3 carrots, 1/2 celery root and greens)
  • 1 l beef soup 
  • 1-2 tablespoons of clarified butter or organic oil and some water
  • Salt and pepper
  • chives, parsley and lovage, cut in small pieces



  1. Heat the clarified butter (or organic oil) in a pot
  2. Lightly saute spring onions or leek 
  3. Add the smoked meat
  4. Add the small pieces of celery
  1. Add the small cut carrots
  2. Sieve the pearl barley, wash it with cold water and put it in the pot
  3. Pour 1 l of beef soup in it, add just a pinch of salt and pepper and let it simmer
  4. Add parsley and lovage and taste it from time to time until the barley is firm (approximately 20 to 30 minutes). You can add some water to get the right consistency

Before you serve the soup, put some chives on it - my cooking teacher always called it "the love" - and enjoy it!

Yours, Kristina