Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Beef and Barley Soup

I've been craving a beef based soup lately, and several sources have reminded me of the great combination of beef and barley. I decided to give it a whirl, following Budget Bytes' recipe most closely.

The best parts about this soup: by cooking the stew meat first, everything was flavored with its drippings; because the barley's starch began to break down and thicken the soup, no thickening agent was needed to make this almost stew-like; and finally, adding the potatoes in at the end prevented them from getting too mushy. It is an all around hearty winter soup.

Ingredients (makes 5-6 servings)
  • olive oil
  • 1 lb stew meat, cut into small pieces
  • 1 white onion, chopped
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, diced
  • 4 small stalks OR 2 large stalks celery, sliced
  • small bunch carrots, sliced
  • pinch dried thyme leaves
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 small package (about 10 oz) white mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 6 cups beef stock (I used Better Than Bouillon's beef base in 6 cups water)
  • 1 cup dried barley
  • 1 lb small red potatoes, chopped into bite size pieces
  1. Heat a small amount of olive oil in large stockpot over medium heat. Add stew meat and cook until browned. Transfer to separate bowl and set aside, leaving drippings in stockpot.
  2. Drizzle more olive oil into stockpot. Add onions and garlic and cook until onions have softened.
  3. Add celery, carrots, thyme, and bay leaves. Cook for 4-5 minutes, adding a splash of water if vegetables start to stick or burn.
  4. Add mushrooms. Continue cooking for another 3-4 minutes.
  5. Clear a little spot and add tomato paste. Cook until paste heats up, then gradually stir it into juices and vegetables.
  6. Add cooked meat back into stockpot, along with beef stock and barley. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cover; simmer for 40 minutes.
  7. Add potatoes and simmer, covered, for another 10-15 minutes.

No comments:

Post a Comment