Beef Barley Soup

Beef Barley Soup is a hearty and comforting dish, perfect for cold weather or any time you crave a nourishing meal. The soup begins with tender chunks of beef, usually a cut like chuck roast, which is known for its rich flavor and ability to become incredibly tender when cooked slowly. These beef pieces are seared to a golden-brown, developing a deep, savory flavor that forms the base of the soup.

The next layer of flavor comes from the aromatic vegetables – diced onions, carrots, and celery. These are sautéed until they’re soft and fragrant, mingling with the beef. Garlic is often added for its pungent aroma, and sometimes, tomato paste is included for a hint of sweetness and acidity.

The soup’s liquid is typically a combination of beef broth and water, providing a rich and meaty base. Some recipes also include a splash of red wine for complexity and depth. The broth is brought to a simmer, and the seared beef is added back in, allowing it to cook slowly and become meltingly tender.

Barley, the star carbohydrate of this dish, is added next. Pearled barley is most commonly used, prized for its chewy texture and nutty flavor. It absorbs the flavors of the broth as it cooks, becoming tender yet maintaining a satisfying bite.

Herbs like bay leaves, thyme, and rosemary are often added for their aromatic qualities, infusing the soup with earthy and slightly floral notes. These herbs complement the robust flavors of the beef and barley beautifully.

As the soup simmers, the flavors meld together. The barley thickens the broth slightly, and the beef becomes fork-tender. The vegetables soften, contributing sweetness and depth. The final soup is a harmonious blend of savory beef, nutty barley, and sweet vegetables, with each spoonful offering a comforting warmth.

Beef Barley Soup is often served with crusty bread or a side salad, making it a complete and satisfying meal. It’s a classic dish that’s both simple in its ingredients and rich in its flavors, a testament to the power of slow cooking and the magic of simple, wholesome ingredients coming together to create something deeply satisfying.

Ingredients

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2–3 lbs chuck roast
2 carrots sliced in thin rounds
2 stalks celery sliced thin
1 medium onion chopped fine
3 cloves garlic crushed
1 tablespoon dried parsley
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon ground thyme
6 cups low sodium beef broth
1 can diced tomatoes (14.5 ounce)
1 bay leaf
2/3 cup medium Barley
1 can corn drained (14.5 ounce)

Preparation

In dutch oven or large stockpot heat vegetable oil over medium heat. Add beef and sear. Remove beef to a plate.
Add carrots, celery, and onion and cook for 4-5 minutes. Add the garlic, parsley, oregano and thyme and cook for just 1 minute; stirring constantly.
Add the beef broth, diced tomatoes, bay leaf and beef back to the pot. Reduce heat and simmer for 1 1/2 hours or until the roast is fork tender. Add barley and corn; cover with lid for 30 minutes. Remove lid and continue simmering for 15 minutes.
Remove roast from the pot and trim cutting the beef away from any gristle or fat. Cut or shred into bite size chunks and return to the pot.

Enjoy !

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