February tends to bring some of the coldest weather we experience in Wisconsin and so, while it holds Valentine's Day and all kinds of lovey dovey goodies, February is my go-to soup month. I want soup at least once a week and I want to be able to set aside a quart or two of it in my fridge for lunches. I want to be able to wrap my frigid fingers around a warm bowl or mug of the stuff and thaw my hands while I warm my soup. This time around, I'm sharing a sausage and barley soup made quick with the Instant Pot.
I like using the Instant Pot to make most of my soups because I can get all day stove flavor without spending more than a few minutes assembling something that will be nourishing me and my family throughout the week. For this one, you can opt to just use one kind of sausage (though I really adore this combination), different vegetables (celery instead of celeriac, for instance), different beans or no beans, and even different broth (but choose something flavorful). I love the tender pop that barley brings to each spoonful of this hearty soup.
Sometimes I just have a bowl of soup and that's it. Other times, a bit of crusty bread or a half a grilled cheese sandwich find their way alongside a serving. Soup is simple and comforting and this one's even quick. So don't get too fussy about sides and spend a little time warming up a bit with a bowl.
- ½ pound ground Italian sausage
- 1 cup diced onion
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 tsp. dried Italian seasoning
- 16 oz. smoked sausage, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 1 cup diced red pepper
- 1 cup chopped celeriac
- ½ cup uncooked pearl barley
- 5 cups chicken broth
- 1 T. sun dried tomato paste
- 1 (16 oz.) can cannellini beans
- 1 cup coarsely shredded carrot
- Salt and pepper, to taste
Turn the Instant Pot to the sauté setting. When the display says HOT add the Italian sausage and diced onion; brown for about 5 minutes.
Add the garlic powder, Italian seasoning, smoked sausage, red pepper, celeriac, barley, broth, and tomato paste.
Cover the pot and secure the lid. Make sure the valve is set to sealing. Set the soup to cook for 20 minutes on high pressure. When the time is up, allow the pot to release its pressure naturally for about 10 minutes before you move the valve to venting. Remove the lid, stir and add the cannellini beans and carrot. Carefully taste the soup - it's hot - and add salt and pepper, to taste.
- Yields: 6-8 servings
- Preparation Time: 30 minutes