This soup is quick, easy, low in calories, high in vitamins and minerals and soothing on the digestive system.

You will need:

1  onion; 3 sticks of celery and 3 sage leaves, finely chopped

3 tablespoons of olive oil

1.5 litres of vegetable stock

200 g fresh spinach

150g barley (well rinsed)

salt, pepper to taste

brewers yeast or parmesan cheese to garnish


Gently sweat the onions, celery and sage with the salt and pepper until the onions become glassy.

Add the barley and stir to coat with the onion mixture, followed by the stock.

Gently simmer until the barley is cooked (consult the packaging for the cooking time)

Finely chop the spinach and place two handfuls in each soup bowl. Pour the hot soup over the spinach and serve with brewers yeast or parmesan cheese.

This soup can be stored in the fridge for 3-4 days if you add the spinach to the soup bowls when serving. It is better not to reheat spinach.

With thanks to Sophie Dahl and Maureen for the inspiration!