Monday, January 2, 2012

Serving Up {Soup}: Beef and Barley Stew

Happy 2012!

It is good to be back. I didn't intend to go dark for over 2 weeks, but Christmas got the best of me. I guess all those food bloggers that posted throughout the Christmas break went into it better prepared than me :)

After my overload of cookie posts in the month of December, I am excited to post some yummy, hearty stews and soups. That is what I really crave this time of year and most of the soups that I make on a regular basis come together really quickly! I try to brown hamburger and sausage the day that I buy it, then I stick it in the freezer, which allows me to truly "throw" a soup together with very little effort on my part.  Perfect for the busy dinner hour.

This first soup is remarkably easy, yet it tastes so yummy! I have been making this Beef and Barley Stew since I got married and have never tired of it.  Serve it with some delicious corn bread and it is simply perfect for a day when you need to get warmed up from the inside out, which for me is most days!

printable version

1 pound ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped
1/2 cup celery, chopped
1 1/2 cup carrots, sliced
1 46-ounce V-8 juice (can use tomato juice but V-8 has more flavor)
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup medium pearl barley
1 Tbs. chili powder
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
frozen corn (optional)

Brown ground beef with the onion and celery until beef is cooked through and the vegetables are soft. Drain the fat. Stir in the carrots, vegetable juice, water, barley and spices. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer - cover and allow to simmer for 50-60 minutes or until the barley and carrots are tender.
If adding frozen corn, add it just the last five minutes before serving.

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