Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Beef and Barley Soup

It has been cold and rainy.  And sometimes snowy.  That is soup weather!  I had been craving bread and made some the other day.  Homemade bread calls for soup, right.  So I made some soup to go with the Oatmeal Molasses Bread.  It was rich and delicious.  Just right for a chilly night.

 

Beef and Barley Soup

About 1 pound of beef cubed.  I used London Broil.
1 medium onion, diced
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
2 teaspoons minced garlic
6 cups beef broth
+/- 1 teaspoon beef base,  optional
1 can (14.5 oz.) diced tomatoes
1 1/2 cup diced carrots
1 cup diced celery, about 2 stalks
1/2 cup pearl barley

 
I apologize for this picture.  I didn't notice it was blurry until I sat down to write this blog.

 

Heat the oil in a Dutch oven and brown the beef cubes in two batches. 

 

Set aside and add the onions to the pan.  You may need a bit more olive oil.

 

When the onions turn translucent, add the garlic and cook for one more minute.  Return the meat to the Dutch oven.  Pour in the beef broth, the tomatoes and add the beef base.  I had some beef base in the refrigerator and decided it would add a richness to the broth, but that is optional.  Bring to soup to a boil and reduce to simmer.  Cover and let it cook for 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally. 

 

Add the carrots and celery to the soup and start the barley cooking.  I cooked the barley in a separate pan, according to the directions.  Sometimes I add it to the soup and then have to wait past the time the soup is fully cooked for the barley to soften.  I brought 1 1/2 cups of water to a boil and added the 1/2 cup of barley, after rinsing.   Reduce to a simmer.  Cook it for about 45 minutes until softened, but still chewy.  Don't put the lid on.  It will boil over.  It might be best not to ask how I know this.

 

When the barley is done, add it to the soup.  Don't worry if there is a bit of water that has not absorbed.  Just pour everything in and cook for fifteen minutes more so the barley can absorb all the flavors of the soup and so the veggies can finish cooking.

 

Serve with homemade bread.  Or any rolls you like.  Or no bread.  But dipping the bread in the rich broth and then slurping it down was divine!