bündner gerstensuppe – swiss mountain style barley soup

you know how i’m always one to proclaim girls should get flowers…? well, today i was spoilt with a beautiful pink bouquet, coming from a really nice flower shop. it was neatly wrapped in brown paper, joint by a dessert spoon. a spoon! spoon & flower, anyone? gotta love a good sense of humor. there was a perfectly handwritten, thoughtful little note, too. unfortunately, no name, though. the sender hasn’t disclosed his (or her, come to think of it? i hope not, haha) identity (just yet). so what can a girl do? simple (if you consult my mom): “thank the internet”. well, okay, i guess? so, here goes everything: 
dear undisclosed cavalier, thank you so much for the beautiful surprise! that was very thoughtful of you. but still, you’re a funny one, keeping your identity a mystery like that. i’d throw in a hug – maybe even a kiss (on the cheek) if i only knew who you are… hmm. pity, when you think of it, no?
off the record: am i convincing, there, girls? i’m giving it all i can!

anyway, so, rest assured, dear cavalier, that i’m hoping you’ll be able to harvest the merits for your actions, in due time. we won’t want that nice gesture to go unnoticed, would we now. i only have your best interest in mind, of course. until then, i guess i’ll have to spoon my dessert (and soup) alone. sighs. 
bündner gerstensuppe – swiss mountain / grisons style barley soup
2 carrots
1 piece leek
1/2 celeriac
1 celery stalk
1 onion
2 garlic cloves
1 tbsp. tomato paste
1 bunch flat parsley
1.5 l vegetable broth
100 g barley
100 g 
1 dl heavy cream
2 tbs. butter
salt, pepper, nutmeg
whipped cream for serving, optional
start by very finely dicing all the vegs: carrots, leek, celeriac, celery stalk, onion, garlic cloves. heat the butter in a large saucepan and brown the vegs and tomato paste for a couple of minutes. stir well. add the water and barley. simmer on low heat for an hour. finely chop the dried beef and the parsley, including the stems. towards the end of the hour, add the vegetable broth, cream, parsley and dried beef and season with salt, pepper and musk. simmer for 15 more minutes. serve with a dollop of whipped cream, maybe. 
and a ps (directed at the soup, not you, cavalier): this soup is a cheeky bastard. really! if you make it for 30 – which you most likely won’t – think about it again. no, actually: just don’t do it, okay? it’s not a good idea. make something that can be pulsed, easily, instead. it’s all about the effort-impression ratio, as i like to call it. impress with the least possible effort. hehe. kitchen wisdom, eh? 
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