It's been a long time since I posted as I've been traveling and sadly not cooking very much. When I did have a chance to cook, I relied on old standbys instead of something new. But, I just came back from teaching in Denmark and on the lunch break, I went to a little soup kitchen that had a daily special that I just had to come home and make. It was made with ground pork, leeks, celery and barley and some peas. The flavoring was a light hint of thyme and it was just so nurturing that I made it immediately after going to the grocery store. It was just what I needed after traveling so much. Pork is an underrated meat for making soup and it is one of the best for helping you recover. One of these days, I will post my Pork Bone Soup recipe for broken bones. And, these days, it is much less fatty than it used to be. I love pork, since I am part Chinese, and I usually buy the premium, leaner kind. If you buy a fattier ground pork, brown it first, then drain off the oil before adding the other ingredients. Otherwise, this is a very simple and delicious soup that's quick to make and just right for a tired body that needs some nurturing!
Danish Pork Soup
1 pound lean ground Pork
3 Tablespoons Butter
2 large leeks, roots trimmed, dark green top removed, cut into small pieces and rinsed
1 small onion, chopped
10 - 11 cups diluted chicken broth (1/2 canned chicken broth and 1/2 water)
1 cup Pearl Barley
1 teaspoon dried Thyme
1 cup frozen peas
Salt and fresh ground pepper
Melt Butter in a large soup pot and then add in the Leeks and Onions. Cook until just softened and add in the ground Pork. Stir and cook until Pork is no longer pink. Add in the Chicken Broth, the Pearl Barley and the Thyme. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Cook for 45 minutes or until the barley is tender. Stir in the Frozen Peas. Season with salt and pepper.
Five Element Analysis
Pork is considered a Water food and very good for Kidney Yin Deficiency, or exhaustion and is also full of B Vitamins. Soup of course is also extremely good for the Kidneys as well. Leeks, onions and Thyme contribute the Metal Element. The Chicken Broth and Celery contribute the Wood Element. Barley brings in the Earth Element and helps regulate blood sugar and is considered very cooling. So the only element that is missing is Fire. I added a tomato salad to round out and balance this soup.