Barley, Kale and Kidney Bean Chili

by Didi Emmons @Vegetarian Planet


  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cups sliced onions
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2/3 cup pearled or hulled barley
  • 2 teaspoons fresh chopped sage or 1 teaspoon dried sage
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, or more, to taste
  • 10 cups water or Basic Vegetable stock, or more as needed
  • 1 large potato, peeled and chopped into 1 -inch cubes
  • 2 cups 1/2 inch thick carrot rounds
  • 1 small bunch kale
  • 1 1/4 cups cooked and rinsed kidney beans
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 4 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil

kaleIn a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat, and add the onions. Cook the onions for 5 to 6 minutes, stirring occasionally, then add the garlic, barley, sage, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 7 cups of the water or stock. Cover the pan, bring the stew to a boil then turn the heat to low. Let the stew simmer for 25 minutes, then add the potato, carrots, and 2 cups more water or stock. Cover the pan again, and let the stew simmer for 10 minutes or more.

Cut the stem and inner stalk from kale. Coarsely chop the leaves (there should be about 6 cups) and add them to the stew with 1 cup water or stock. Simmer for 10 minutes more, adding more water or stock if the stew seems too dry.

Add the kidney beans, stir well, then add the lemon juice. The stew should be similar to a pilaf, but slightly less dry. Taste the stew and add salt and pepper, keeping in mind that you’ll also be add Parmesan cheese. Ladle the stew into bowl, sprinkle the Parmesan cheese over, then dribble 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil over each bowl.