Beef & Barley Stew

Just saying the words beef and barley stew lets us know we’re in for a hearty meal, in this bowlful of savoury beef and vegetables against a barley backdrop.

  • 1- 1.5kg braising steak
  • kosher salt, for beef, plus more for serving
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 2 large carrots, diced
  • 3 celery ribs, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 teaspoons beef bouillon or better than bouillon
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme, plus more for serving
  • 8 cups beef stock
  • 1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 cup pearl barley
  • freshly cracked black pepper
  • minced flat-leaf parsley, optional
  1. Season the beef generously with kosher salt. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large pot or dutch oven set over medium high heat. When the oil is glistening, add the beef in batches until browned on all sides, taking care not to crowd the pan, about 15 minutes total. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the beef to a plate. 
  2. Reduce the heat to medium. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil, along with the onion, carrots and celery and cook, stirring, until beginning to soften, about 5 minutes. If the bottom of the pan is beginning to burn, use 2-3 tablespoons of the beef stock to deglaze, loosening the browned bits. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, 1 minute longer. Add the tomato paste and bouillon, stir to combine. Add the thyme, beef stock, soy sauce and the beef, along with juices from the plate, bring to a boil over high heat. 
  3. Add the barley, reduce the heat and cook, simmering, until tender, according to the package instructions, about 30 minutes. If using quick cooking barley, simmer the soup after adding the beef for 20 minutes before adding the quick cooking barley until tender, about 10 minutes.
  4. Serve with freshly cracked black pepper and flat leaf parsley if desired.


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