Beef and Barley Soup


June Hersh, The Kosher Carnivore

This iconic American dish walks a fine line between a soup and a stew. Thick and rich, laden with beef bits, chewy mushrooms and tender pearl barley this soup is a meal in itself.


1 pound stew meat cut into 1/2–inch pieces
1 large onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
3 to 4 cloves garlic, chopped
2 celery ribs, chopped (about 1 cup)
1 large carrot, peeled and chopped (about ½ cup)
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 quarts beef stock
2 bay leaves
1 pound cremini mushrooms, cleaned and chopped
1 cup pearl barley
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large soup pot, cook and stir the beef until nicely browned, about 5 to 7 minutes.  Remove with a slotted spoon and pour off the fat from the pot. Heat the remaining oil in the pot, cook and stir the onions, garlic, celery and carrots, over medium heat, until they begin to soften, about 15 minutes. Add the stock, bay leaves, mushrooms, barley and reserved beef. Season with salt and a generous sprinkling of pepper.  Bring to a strong simmer then reduce the heat and cover and simmer for 1 hour, adding boiling water if the soup becomes too thick. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Discard the bay leaf before serving.


Yield: About 8 servings

Behind the counter: Have you butcher cut stew meat from the chuck or shin.  If you can score some bones, toss them in for added flavor. Alternate cut lamb cut from the shoulder (+$).

Recipes: Soups, Beef, Barley, Meat, Kosher

Print   Email