Here’s a toasty winter vegetable soup to keep you warm as you wait for spring to finally arrive.
1/4 cup diced carrot
1/4 cup diced celery
1/3 cup – 1/2 cup diced onion
2 sage leaves (or 1 teaspoon dried sage)
1 small red Serrano pepper or similar, diced
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
1 pound cauliflower tops (white and green), which turns out to be about 3 cups of chunky chopped cauliflower
1 pound squash or pumpkin, diced/cubed, which also turns out to be about 3 cups
1 quart vegetable broth
2-4 teaspoons of salt
1 cup uncooked barley or spelt
Make a “soffritto” by sautéing the carrot, celery, onion, sage and small red pepper in the olive oil in a medium/large pot on low for 5-10 minutes. Then add the broth, squash, cauliflower and salt. Cover and cook on medium flame for 15 minutes. Add the barley or spelt and continue cooking for another 25 minutes at a gentle boil. Serve with sprinkled parsley, a dash of olive oil and a sprinkle of Parmesan to add an Italian touch! A thick cut slice of crusty bread doesn’t hurt either.