Month: March 2021

18 Mar 2021

Chicken and Barley Soup

Chicken and Barley Soup

There’s nothing quite like soup to provide comfort and nourishment when the weather is less than ideal! If you have an Instant Pot or a stovetop pressure cooker, this soup can come together in a jiffy, but it’s also delicious made entirely in a pot on the stovetop.


  • 1 whole pasture-raised chicken
  • 2 sprigs rosemary, divided
  • 1 small bunch thyme, divided
  • 2 Tbsp Butter or olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1-2 quarts chicken stock, homemade or store-bought for a collagen-rich homemade stock, check out our recipe here:
  • 3 lb carrots, diced
  • 2/3 cup pearl barley, wheat berries, farro, or another whole grain
  • 3 stalks celery, including leaves, diced
  • 1 15 oz can white beans, undrained
  • 1/2 lb sturdy greens (kale, spinach, collards, cabbage, etc.), chopped
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  • If you have an Instant Pot or stovetop pressure cooker: place chicken, 1 sprig of rosemary, half of the thyme and 4 cups water in the Instant Pot or pressure cooker. For extra flavorful broth, add the trimmings from your vegetables to the pot. Cook for 20 minutes at high pressure, using the quick steam release method at the end of cooking.
  • Alternatively, add ingredients from step 1 to a pot on the stove and simmer gently until chicken is fully cooked and very tender, 1.5-2 hours.
  • While the chicken is cooking, heat oil or butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add onion and saute until caramelized, stirring often. Add celery and garlic. Mince remaining rosemary and thyme and add to onion mixture, stirring until very fragrant.
  • Add 1 quart broth to the onion mixture, scraping up any browned bits in the bottom of the pot. Bring to a gentle simmer. Add barley, beans and their liquid, and carrots to the pot and cook until grain is tender, about 30-40 minutes.
  • When chicken is fully cooked, carefully separate the meat from the bones, reserving the bones to make your next batch of chicken stock. Dice meat and add to the soup.
  • Strain broth created while cooking the chicken and add it to your soup pot.
  • Add greens. Continue to simmer, stirring occasionally, for about 10-15 minutes while the flavors meld and the greens become tender. Add additional broth if desired to make the soup the consistency you like, more chunky or more broth-y. Add salt and pepper to your taste.
  • This soup is excellent served with rye toast or whole-grain crackers.


08 Mar 2021

The Spotted Lanternfly

The Spotted Lanternfly

(Updated November 2022)

The spotted lanternfly has become more firmly established in Ohio, with established populations in Cuyahoga, Lorain and Jefferson counties.  Last month, this insect was positively identified in Hamilton County (near the Mill Creek) and its arrival may have been via the rail system. The Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) asks that individuals keep watch for the spotted lanternfly and if detected take the following steps:

  1. Eggs- scrape them off the tree or other surface, double bag them and throw them away. Alcohol or hand sanitizer can also be used to kill them. Report all destroyed egg masses.
  2. Specimens- Collect and report specimens to the ODA. Specimens can be placed in a plastic bag and frozen.

The following link allows you to report a suspected spotted lanternfly in Ohio by completing the form or scanning a QR code. There is a “general information tab” and a “report suspected” tab.

U.S. Department of Agriculture - Lance Cheung/Multimedia PhotoJournalist/USDA Photo by Lance Cheung, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

(This post was originally written in March 2021)

Traveling this summer?  Beware of unwanted hitchhikers.  The spotted lanternfly (Lycorma delicatula) has officially entered Ohio with a confirmed population in Jefferson County. This insect was first reported in Pennsylvania in 2014 and now resides in several eastern states.  Lanternflies are poor fliers but can hitchhike.  Large egg masses are formed and these masses are laid on trees, wood or rusty metal (e.g. old train cars). It is these egg masses that are often moved by human assisted spread.

The spotted lanternfly can congregate in large numbers and preferred hosts are Tree of Heaven and grapes but spotted lanternflies have been documented on a variety of species. These phloem feeders concern fruit producers as their large numbers can cause a nuisance.  They squirt honeydew from their abdomen (which can rain down on people) and this substance promotes the growth of black sooty mold.

If you are traveling east, do not pack up the lanterfly when you return home.  Check yourself and your belongings for any tag-alongs.  Adults are the easiest to spot and are most abundant late summer through fall.

The spotted lanternfly can congregate in large numbers.
The lanternfly with its wings open.