The weather in west central Florida has finally cooled down…like lows in the upper 40’s. When this happens, it’s time for some comfort food…in this case I made a beef barley vegetable soup for supper a couple nights ago.
Mary Jo and I, usually at about 4 o’clock or 4:30, go back and forth about what to have for supper. I guess planning is not an option for us. Heck, the grocery store is right next door! We’ll discus things like, what’s in the refrigerator? What’s in the pantry? Sometimes we have everything for the meal, but not for this beef barley vegetable soup. Mary Jo volunteered to go to the store to pick up some beef.
There’s a lot of options when buying beef for a soup. Some cuts are really tough and you need to cook them for quite a while for them to get tender. This would be chuck and round. A piece of top sirloin can be quite tender and be a good choice for soup. I like really tender beef, and since we are only cooking for two, I asked Mary Jo to get tenderloin. It’s expensive but it doesn’t have to be cooked for a long time so it can be a quick meal. The ingredients in this recipe made enough for 3 people, so the $9.50 spent was really not too extravagant.
Mary Jo had just made a wonderful bread to go along with the soup. It was a quick bread made with rye flour and coated with different seeds. It was the perfect texture and flavor combination for this hearty soup.
What’s even better, is that she is going to start posting her bread and baking recipes online at http://www.mjbakesalot.com. This will be one of her first posts at the new site and it will be exciting to have these recipes handy in the future.
Well, beef barley vegetable soup is Comfort Food 101. It’s fast and will hit the spot every time.
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 10 oz. beef tenderloin, cubed
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 1 cup chopped celery
- 1 cup chopped carrots
- 8 oz. sliced mushrooms
- 4 to 5 sprigs fresh thyme, tied together in a bundle, (or 1 tsp dried thyme)
- 2 cups beef broth, (I used Better than Bouillon, roasted beef base, 3 tsp.)
- 2 cups chicken broth, (Better than Bouillon, roasted chicken base, 2 tsp.)
- 1 cup Quaker quick pearled barley
- salt and pepper
- In a large sauce pan on medium high heat, add the oil and bring to shimmering.
- Add the beef to brown, 2 mins, remove from the pan and reserve
- Place the pan back on the heat and add the onion, celery, and carrots and cook about 5 mins. to tenderize, If the pan is somewhat dry, add ¼ cup of the chicken broth.
- Next, add the sliced mushrooms and cook an additional 4 mins.
- Add the beef broth, chicken broth, quick barley and thyme bundle and bring to a boil.
- Cook for 12 minutes for the barley to soften
- Add the beef and taste and adjust seasonings, (I added ½ tsp salt and 1 tsp ground black pepper)
- Remove the thyme bundle and serve