Soak barley in water for 6 hours or over night.
Melt butter in a large heavy pot over medium-low heat. Put in ham. Cook until ham just begins to brown, 3 -5 minutes. Stir in onion and cook 2 minutes. Add garlic and cook 3 minutes longer. (Please do onion and garlic steps separately, so garlic doesn't burn.) Add carrot, parsnip, rutabaga, leek, and cabbage. Cook, covered, 10 minutes, stirring midway through the cooking.
Pour in chicken stock and bring to a boil over high heat. When boiling, immediately reduce heat. Simmer, partially covered for about 30 minutes. Add barley and cook for
15 minutes more. Reduce heat to low. Allow liquid to come off the simmer and slowly stir in cream. Do not allow to go anywhere near a boil.
Stir in thyme and nutmeg and season with salt and pepper to taste. When ready to serve,
grate Parmesan over all.
Serves 6 to 8.
Contributor: Pat Ciesla
more soup recipes