Vegan and Gluten Free
Italian cuisine is known for pasta, gnocchi, risotto and polenta. More recently many people have come to know farro. But did you know that Italians also enjoy barley? Here is a simple, basic Italian Barley Soup—zuppa di orzo— that is both healthy, appetizing and, if made in a pressure cooker, quickly prepared.
Zuppa di orzo hails from the Trentino-Alto Adige, an autonomous region in northeastern Italy once part of Austria—and its cuisine reflects that history. The soup gets its special character from Speck, a cured, smoked pork product. That smoked flavor is not one that you usually associate with Italian cookery, but you can find it in this part of Italy. But leave it out—and perhaps add some cooked beans—and you’ll have a perfectly delicious and hearty vegan/vegetarian soup.