There is nothing more satisfying on a cold winter day than a big pot of beef barley mushroom soup. Seems to soothe the soul and helps get us through the doldrums of the winter season.
I love to add croutons to my soup….
1 package stewing beef, cubed
1/2 cup pearl barley
3 cups water
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
2 green onions, chopped
1 carrot, thinly sliced
2 stalks celery, thinly sliced
3 garlic cloves
2 (10 ounce) packages sliced mushrooms
5 cups beef broth, approx (1 box 900ml )
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 beef oxo cube ( if needed – depending on how beefy you like the taste )
A pinch of tarragon, thyme, basil, oregano ( your choice of spices )
There is a quick method to soak the barley if you have not decided to make this soup a day in advance. Bring the barley to a boil in a pot of water and then remove from the heat and let it sit for one hour. Drain and rinse the barley. ( Some methods call for you to boil it again for another 10 minutes but I omitted this step and the barley was fine in the soup.
In a large add oil and brown the stewing beef cubes. Remove and let cool before chopping into bite-sized pieces. Add the vegetables to the pot and cook slightly, then add the mushrooms and continue to brown. Return the meat to the soup pot and add water, bouillion and barley.
Cook soup for 45 minutes and let simmer till you are ready to serve. ( The longer the soup cooks—the better it tastes )
Serve with croutons, crackers or rolls.