Spicy Sausage, Barley, and Mushroom Soup

2 teas olive oil
2 cups thinly sliced onions
8 oz. spicy Italian Turkey sausage
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup sliced carrot
2 garlic gloves, minced
1 bay leaf
5 cups thinly sliced shiitake mushroom caps
1 1/2 cups portobello mushrooms
1/2 cup uncooked pearl barley
3 (14 oz) cans fat-free, less sodium chicken broth
2 tablespoons brandy
1 teas salt
1/4 teas freshly ground black pepper
6 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley


1. Heat oil in large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onions, cook 5 min or until tender. Remove casings from sausage. Add sausage to pan, cook 8 minutes or until sausage is browned, stirring to crumble. Add celery, carrot, garlic, and bay leaf. Cook 10 min or until onions are golden brown, stirring frequently.

2. Stir in mushrooms, cook 10 min or until the liquid almost evaporates. Stir in barley, broth, brandy, salt, and pepper. Bring mixture to a boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer 1 hour or until barley is tender. Discard bay leaf. Sprinkle with parsley.

Yield: 6 servings.