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Lentil, Barley and Sweet Potato Soup


½ cup (125 mL) green lentils
2 tsp (10 mL) canola oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 carrots, coarsely chopped
3 celery stalks, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
1 ½ tsp (7 mL) dried thyme
½ cup (125 mL) pot or pearl barley
6 cups (1.5 L) low salt chicken or vegetable stock
2 bay leaves
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and diced
¼ cup (50 mL) fresh dill, chopped*
¼ cup (50 mL) fresh parsley chopped
¼ tsp (1 mL) salt
¼ tsp (1 mL) pepper

Rinse lentils, discarding any blemished or shriveled ones; set aside. In a large saucepan, heat oil over medium heat; sauté garlic, carrots, celery, onion and thyme, stirring often, for about 5 minutes or until vegetables are softened.
Stir in lentils and barley; pour in stock. Add bay leaves. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 40 minutes. Stir in sweet potato; cover and simmer for 20 minutes or until barley and potato are tender. Remove and discard bay leaves. Stir in dill and parsley. Season with salt and pepper. Add more stock if desired.
Cooked soup can be covered and refrigerate for up to two days. Add more stock when reheating.

*If fresh dill is not available, substitute 1 ¼ tsp (6 mL) dried dill.

Makes 8 servings.

Nutritional Information (per serving):

Calories: 141
Protein: 8 g
Carbohydrate: 24 g
Fibre: 5 g
Sugars: 4 g
Fat: 2 g
Saturated Fat: 0.5 g
Trans Fat: 0 g
Cholesterol: 4 mg
Sodium: 215 mg