Beef, Barley, and Portobello Mushroom Soup

4-6

This simple and easy soup is even better the next day, so be sure to make enough. I like to enjoy it with a serving of warmed cheesy polenta.

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1¾ pounds beef stew meat, cut into 1-inch pieces

1 onion, chopped

2 celery stalks, chopped

2 carrots, peeled and chopped

½ cup red wine

1 garlic clove, minced

Leaves of 2 sprigs of thyme, chopped

8 cups beef or veal stock

¾ cup pearl barley

1 pound portobello mushrooms, sliced

Salt and pepper, to taste

In a large sauce pan, warm oil on medium-high heat.


Add the beef and cook for 5 minutes, or until evenly browned. Remove with a slotted spoon and reserve.


Add the onion, celery, and carrots and cook for 5 minutes or until soft.


Add the red wine, garlic, and thyme and reduce by half.


Add the seared beef, stock, and barley and bring to a boil.


Reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook on low heat for 1½ hours.


Add the mushrooms and cook for 10 minutes or until the beef is very tender.


Season with salt and pepper and serve in warmed bowls.

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