Heat oil in a soup pot. Sauté garlic and onion for 3 to 4 minutes. Add water, barley, sea salt, bay leaves and red pepper flakes. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Add all remaining ingredients except the parsley, cover and simmer another 5 to 7 minutes. Garnish with parsley.
Note: If using whole barley, soak overnight or 6 to 8 hours and simmer in the soaking water for about 1 hour or until slightly tender before adding remaining ingredients in the recipe.
Per serving - 157 calories, 5 gram fat (28% calories from fat), 7 gram protein, 22 gram carbohydrate, 5 gram fiber, 0 milligram cholesterol, 208 milligram sodium