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Best Ever Beef and Barley Soup

Warm, hearty, and brimming with rich flavors, the Best Ever Beef and Barley Soup is a comforting classic that’s perfect for those chilly days when you crave a bowl of nourishing goodness. This soup is a delicious blend of tender beef, wholesome barley, and an array of vegetables, simmered in a savory broth. Whether you’re looking for a satisfying weeknight dinner or a crowd-pleasing meal for family gatherings, this recipe will surely become a staple in your kitchen. Let’s dive into the ingredients you’ll need and the step-by-step preparation to create this culinary masterpiece.

Ingredients You’ll Need:

For the Soup:

  • 1 pound (450g) lean beef stew meat, cubed
  • 1 cup pearled barley
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 carrots, diced
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1 cup frozen corn
  • 8 cups beef broth (homemade or store-bought)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

For Garnish (optional):

  • Fresh parsley, chopped
  • Grated Parmesan cheese

Preparation:

Step 1: Brown the Beef

  • Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large soup pot over medium-high heat.
  • Add the cubed beef and season it with salt and pepper.
  • Sear the beef on all sides until it’s nicely browned. This step enhances the flavor of the soup.
  • Once browned, transfer the beef to a plate and set it aside.

Step 2: Sauté the Aromatics

  • In the same pot, add the chopped onion, minced garlic, diced carrots, and chopped celery.
  • Sauté the vegetables for about 5 minutes or until they start to soften and become fragrant.
  • Stir in the dried thyme and bay leaves, continuing to cook for another minute.

Step 3: Simmer the Soup

  • Return the browned beef to the pot with the sautéed vegetables.
  • Pour in the beef broth, and add the pearled barley.
  • Stir well to combine all the ingredients.
  • Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover the pot, and let it simmer for about 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until the beef is tender and the barley is cooked through.

Step 4: Add the Vegetables

  • Stir in the frozen peas and corn, allowing them to heat through for 5-10 minutes.
  • Taste the soup and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper as needed.

Step 5: Serve and Garnish

  • Remove the bay leaves from the soup.
  • Ladle the hot beef and barley soup into bowls.
  • Garnish each serving with a sprinkle of fresh chopped parsley and grated Parmesan cheese if desired.

Now, your Best Ever Beef and Barley Soup is ready to be enjoyed! This hearty and nutritious dish is perfect for a cozy family dinner or for sharing with friends on a chilly evening. With its savory broth, tender beef, and wholesome barley, it’s sure to warm your heart and satisfy your taste buds. Enjoy!

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