I am in love with my new slow cooker. I’ve used it twice now, to make this soup, as well as sweet potato black bean chili. Both were excellent, and I love that you just put everything in the crock pot and leave it for later! This soup is deceptively easy and simple, but the flavor combination is really awesome— bold and flavorful. We all had seconds, even though a big casserole of baked macaroni and cheese was fresh out of the oven. It was just as good the next day when Slip and I finished it off.
Tomato, Barley, and Pecorino Soup
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 6 cups beef broth
- 1 cup pearl barley, rinsed and picked over
- 1 cup chopped canned tomatoes (or 2 medium tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and finely chopped)
- 1 medium celery rib, finely chopped
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 cup diced pecorino romano
- 2 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
- 1 tsp. hot pepper paste (optional)
- Parmesan reggiano cheese for topping
- Cook the onion in olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Stir occasionally, until tender but not brown, about 10 minutes. Transfer onion into slow cooker.
- Add the broth, barley, tomatoes and celery (and hot pepper paste) to the slow cooker. Cover and cook for 3 hours on low, or until barley is tender and soup is thick. (Ours wasn’t quite done so I added another 20 minutes on high at the end).
- Add salt and pepper to taste. Stir in cheese and parsley. Serve hot, with more cheese on top.
This recipe is adapted from The Italian Slow Cooker by Michele Scicolone. It was a Christmas gift and I love it— so many amazing recipes, from this soup recipe to creamy marscapone polenta or chunky pork shoulder ragu, and what I’m dying to try, balsamic glazed short ribs. Definitely worth it if you have a slow cooker!