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Comfort Soup (Chickpea and Bacon)

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“I made this soup up the other day and it is real comfort food. Hearty and healthy (well, if you don't count the bacon!) - it makes a big pot and that's a good thing as you'll want more than one bowl. You can make this soup vegetarian by omitting the bacon, but do add a couple of tablespoonfuls of olive oil to saute the onions in.”
READY IN:
1hr 40mins
SERVES:
8-10
UNITS:
US

Ingredients Nutrition

Directions

  1. Saute onion, garlic and bacon together until the onion is soft and translucent. Don't be tempted to drain the bacon fat (I use a rather lean bacon, anyway, and there's not that much fat - if you have tons of it, then remove some). Add the chickpeas, carrots, tomato paste, bay leaf and 1 1/2 quarts water. Season to taste. Bring to a simmer and cook, covered for 1/2 an hour. Add the pearl barley and simmer for another 40-60 minutes, or until the chickpeas and barley are cooked through and the soup is quite thick (if the soup is too thick, thin with a little hot water until you achieve the consistency you desire).
  2. This was a really satisfying meal with a tossed green salad and garlic bread.

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