- 1/2 cup pearl barley
- 4 1/2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth, or mushroom broth (see Shopping Tip), divided
- 1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms
- 2 cups boiling water
- 2 teaspoons butter
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 cup minced shallots, (about 4 medium)
- 8 cups sliced white mushrooms, (about 20 ounces)
- 2 stalks celery, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh sage, or 1 teaspoon dried
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 2 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 1 cup dry sherry, (see Ingredient Note)
- 1/2 cup reduced-fat sour cream
- 1/4 cup minced fresh chives
Bring barley and 1 1/2 cups broth to a boil in a small saucepan over high heat. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer until tender, 30 to 35 minutes.
Meanwhile, combine porcinis and boiling water in a medium bowl and soak until softened, about 20 minutes. Line a sieve with paper towels, set it over a bowl and pour in mushrooms and soaking liquid. Reserve the soaking liquid. Transfer the mushrooms to a cutting board and finely chop.
Heat butter and oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add shallots and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 2 minutes. Add white mushrooms and cook, stirring often, until they start to brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Add the porcinis, celery, sage, salt and pepper and cook, stirring often, until beginning to soften, about 3 minutes. Sprinkle flour over the vegetables and cook, stirring, until the flour is incorporated, about 1 minute. Add sherry and cook, stirring, until most of the sherry has evaporated, about 1 minute.
Add the soaking liquid and the remaining 3 cups broth; increase heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the soup has thickened, 18 to 22 minutes.
Add the cooked barley and continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until heated through, about 5 minutes more. Stir in sour cream until incorporated. Garnish with chives.