It’s been a quiet week here in Jessica-land, though I initially mis-typed and put quite, and that’s pretty apt too! For a little bit, at least, this gal is finding a balance between working both the old job and the new. I’m going to pad that little nest egg to bursting! I can find a lot of ways to spend money on this house of ours. Not that there’s anything that a little updating won’t fix. But guys, it’s pretty exciting to be in a place where we plan to stay for a good long while. In recent years, all my home repairs and improvements had been done with an eye towards what would make the house more appealing to buyers, but now I get to change things just because I want to.
In a totally unrelated matter, I’ve come to think Himself may be a wee bit crazy. He came home last Thursday to tell me that he plans on jumping into a frozen lake. No, all kidding aside, he’s going to do the Polar Bear Plunge to raise money for the Special Olympics. And what’s even better, since he’s jumping as a part of the Grand Rapids Masons team, the Minnesota Masonic Charity Services will match the funds he raises. That’s like free money for Special Olympics Minnesota, it can’t get more winning than that, right?! In fact, if you wanted to have your donation matched, you could do it right here. In all actuality, though I still find jumping into a lake certifiably crazy, I’m super proud of him (and I will be taking plenty of video to share with you guys at home!). I also have just the recipe to warm him back up, with a touch of vitamin C to ward off any cold, because I’m awesome like that (though not quite awesome enough to do it with him).
Seriously, this soup is my new go-to replacement for chicken noodle soup. It’s easy, tasty, and comes together super quick. Bonus points, it’s full of vegetable stock, spinach, and lemon and will kick the butt of any cold. Yum!
Lemon, mushroom, and barley soup
Inspired by Feast: Generous Vegetarian Meals for Any and Every Appetite by Sarah Copeland
4 cups vegetable stock
2 meyer lemons, rinds scrubbed and cut in half (you can substitute ½ regular lemon)
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
½ teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 cups mushrooms, thickly sliced
1 cup spinach, roughly torn
2 cups cooked barley
Feta cheese to garnish
In a large sauce pan, bring vegetable stock to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and squeeze in lemon juice and throw in lemon. Add olive oil, garlic powder, and salt, and mix. Add mushrooms and torn spinach. Simmer on low for 10 minutes.
Remove lemon and add barley. Cook just until heated through. Serve soup sprinkled with feta cheese.