Little did I know, as a teenager eating soup at my boyfriend’s house, that 30 years later that same soup would be a long-loved staple for our kids.
Every family develops its own food culture. We construct it without intention, for the most part, picking up bits and pieces along the way, but it becomes infused with meaning. What this soup means to me is this: Welcome. No need for fuss. We’re family.
6 or 8 or 10 carrots – whatever you’ve got – peeled and sliced
Celery, optional (My mother-in-law says yes. Everyone has their shortcomings.)
1 onion, peeled, quartered, and sliced thin
lb can crushed tomatoes
8 oz tomato sauce (whatever you use for spaghetti is fine)
1/4 cup barley
6 vegetable bullion cubes
4 cups water
Bring everything to a boil in a large pot, then turn down the heat and simmer, covered, for about 40 minutes, until the carrots are soft.