You may not think of Scotch broth as a typical Ayurvedic dish—but to me it is! That’s because it is made with the seasonal and local ingredients that are perfectly suited to the climate here in Wales, England and Scotland.
The barley, peas and vegetables are really nourishing during the long winters in this part of the world. This recipe makes a large pan full, so halve the quantity for one or two people.
Barley, like wheat, is a staple grain throughout Europe and Asia, though it’s also revered for providing a vital pillar of Western civilisation … beer!
For a while I lived near a brewery, and a few days a week a delicious, sweet aroma used to fill the air. It was the barley being malted. Malting allows the grain to sprout so the enzymes convert the starch into sugar (maltose). Then the grain is air-dried to stop the germination, and the malt is extracted from the grain and used for brewing.
Barley is also used to make malted drinks like Horlicks and caffeine-free coffee substitutes. Before potatoes became widely used, barley was the staple food of the masses. It was cheaper than wheat, which was more of a rich man’s grain. Barley will grow in colder climates than wheat, so is more popular in areas like Tibet, Russia and Eastern Europe.
Ayurvedic Scotch Broth
1 tbsp coconut oil
250 g potatoes peeled & diced
250 g swedes peeled & diced
2 onions peeled & sliced
1 celery stick sliced
1 leek sliced
2½ ltrs vegetable stock
100 g pearl barley rinsed
100 g green split peas
75 g kale finely chopped
salt & pepper to taste
Melt the butter/coconut oil and sauté all vegetables, except for the kale, in a large saucepan for 2–3 minutes.
Add the vegetable stock, washed barley and split peas.
Cover with a lid, bring to the boil and simmer gently for 60 minutes or until the peas and pearl barley are soft.
Stir in the kale and cook for a further 15 minutes, or until all the ingredients are well cooked.
Season to taste with salt and pepper.
To keep my blog free of annoying adverts and exclusively full of quality content, I’ve written a fantastic ebook ‘Keith on Food’ which I hope to entice you to purchase. It’s an excellent read even if I say so myself, and I hope you will take a look. Here are the links for the US and the UK, but it’s surely available worldwide.
Thank you so much.