Slow Cooker Irish Bean and Cabbage Stew

1 medium onion, chopped
3 medium stalks celery, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 head cabbage, chopped
4 medium carrots, sliced
1-1 1/2 lb. red potatoes, scrubbed and cut into large dice
1/3 cup pearled barley, rinsed or brown rice
1 bay leaf
1 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. caraway seeds
1/2 tsp. dried rosemary, crushed
1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
6-8 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
2 (15-oz.) cans no-salt-added beans (your choice: great northern,
          pinto, etc.), drained and rinsed
1 (15-oz.) can no-salt-added diced tomatoes, with juice
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley (optional)

Prep vegetables and place into a large slow cooker, at least 5
quart capacity. Add the seasonings and barley and stir. (It may
be a bit awkward; the cooker will be full.) Add 6 cups vegetable
broth to just cover the vegetables. Add more broth as needed.
Cover cooker and set to LOW. Cook 7 hours.

Add beans, tomatoes, parsley, and Mrs. Dash Table Blend to
taste. Check seasonings and add more herbs if necessary. Cover
and cook for another hour (or two, depending on your time).

Ladle into bowls and serve, sprinkled with fresh parsley, if desired.

Serves 8.