Saturday, January 16, 2010

Beef Barley Soup

Saturday is our big Soup Swap, so I was busy tonight whipping up my contribution; my sister Mary's delicious Beef  Barley Soup.

Of course, every soup is better when it's made with TLC, so that's why I was thrilled when my dear friend, Dawn, offered to come over and help.

She served as Peanut Gallery, Personal Assistant, and even brought us Chinese food to sustain us through the night. Her fiance Jerry showed up when most of the work was done (haha) but we truly enjoyed his company as well. I'd like to take this time to thank Dawn for not making too much fun of my obsessive measuring! :)

And now, back to the soup!

Ingredients (makes 11 cups):
1-2 soup bones
1 lb soup meat (chuck roast or stew meat)
1 1/2 cup chopped onions
1 3/4 cup sliced carrots
1 3/4 cup sliced celery
2 bay leaves
4 sprigs parsley
2 tsps salt
1/8 tsp pepper
9 cups water
1-2 16-oz canned tomatoes (basil & garlic flavor)
1 cup uncooked pearled barley
3 T chopped parsley
3 cloves garlic (more if you like)
beef bouillon

I multiplied the recipe by FIVE for the soup swap. Don't try this at home...(unless you're feeding a crowd or have a ton of freezer space, haha!)

Cut meat into cubes.

Kiss the helper.....

then slice the carrots, celery, and onions.

Go crazy with the garlic if you like, and set it aside for later. In a heavy 4-6 qt. pot, put the bones, meat, onions, 1 cup of the carrots, parsley sprigs, bay leaves, salt, pepper, and water.

Bring to a boil over medium heat. Simmer about 2.5 hours.  Skim yucky stuff off the top.

Remove bones and return meat from bones to soup.  Add remaining carrots and celery, tomatoes, garlic and barley (I rinsed the barley and checked for scary things in it first.)  You may also want to add some beef bouillon at this point. Partly cover, and cook 45 minutes to an hour, til vegetables and barley are tender.  Just before serving, stir in chopped parsley. Makes 11 cups.

I'll be honest and tell you that as I type this, the soup is still in the cooking stage, so I won't be able to post a pic of the results until tomorrow. What?!  It's 12:21am--cut me a little slack, will ya?! [Update: It turned out wonderfully as the pic I added added to the top of this post! :)]

P.S. I also want to thank my friend and colleague, Sarah, for giving me the beautiful apron for Christmas. As I said, every good soup is made with TLC, and with Dawn's, Mr.4444's, and Sarah's help, this one is sure to be a winner!

P.P.S. Dawn "forgot" her Chinese food leftovers! I'm pretty sure she did it on purpose; something tells me she'll be stopping by on Saturday for a taste of the soup! :)

For a printer-friendly copy of the ingredients and directions, click here.