vegetable-barley-soupIt was so cold and cloudy yesterday that all I could think about was a big bowl of tasty hot soup so I went searching through some recipes in a Taste of Home magazine I had purchased a couple of years ago. This is the one I chose because it contained a lot of healthy vegetables, required no meat and was so simple and easy to make in my slow cooker.

1 large sweet potato, peeled and cubed
1-1/2 cups fresh baby carrots, halved
1-1/2 cups frozen cut green beans
1-1/2 cups frozen corn
3 celery ribs, thinly sliced
1 small onion, chopped
1/2 cup chopped green pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced
6 cups water
2 cans(14-1/2 ounces each) vegetable broth
1 cup medium pearl barley
1 bay leaf
1-3/4 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon fennel seed, crushed
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 can (14-1/2 ounces) Italian diced tomatoes, undrained

1. In a 5-quart slow cooker, combine the first 8 ingredients. Stir in the water, broth, barley, bay leaf and seasonings. Cover and cook on low for 8 to 9 hours or until barley and vegetables are tender.

2. Stir in the tomatoes; cover and cook on high for 10 to 20 minutes or until heated through. Discard the bay leaf before serving. Makes 12 servings.


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