• 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 600g root veg, such as carrots, swede and parsnips, roughly chopped
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 litre vegetable stock
  • 100g pearl barley
  • 3 thyme sprigs, plus a small handful thyme leaves to serve
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 400g can chickpeas, drained and rinsed (optional)


  • STEP 1

    Heat the oil in a large-lidded casserole over a medium-low heat. Fry the onion and cook for 8 mins until softened. Stir in the carrot and root veg and cook for 5 mins to soften a little before stirring through the tomato purée.

  • STEP 2

    Pour over the vegetable stock, then stir in the pearl barley and herbs. Put the lid on the pan, bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook for 30 mins. Remove the lid, tip in the chickpeas and cook for a further 30 mins until thickened. Remove the thyme sprigs and bay leaves, then scatter over some fresh thyme leaves to serve.

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