Homemade Beef Barley Soup
Fabulous beef barley soup made from scratch
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 2 hours
- Total Time: 2 hours 20 minutes
- Yield: 6 servings
- Category: Entree, Soup
For the beef stock:
- 2-3 tablespoons canola oil
- 4 pounds bone-in beef chuck, cut into 3-4 pieces
- 1 onion, cut in half
- ½ cup dry red wine
- 1 teaspoon salt
For the soup:
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 carrots, chopped
- 2 celery stalks, chopped
- 12 ounces mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
- ½ cup canned tomatoes, diced
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- Shredded meat from chuck roast, obvious fat removed
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1/2 cup pearl barley
- Homemade beef stock
- 2 cups shredded cooked beef (from the chuck used for stock)
- Chopped fresh parsley or thyme for garnish
For the beef stock:
- Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Working in batches if needed, brown the meat and onion on all sides. Set the browned meat and onions aside.
- Add the red wine to the pot and cook, using a spoon or spatula to scrape up browned bits from the bottom of the pot, till wine reduces a bit.
- Return the meat and onions to the pot, reduce the heat to low, cover the pot and cook till they sweat and release 1/2-3/4 cup juices. Add 2 quarts of water and the salt and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low, and allow to simmer very gently, with the lid partially off. Simmer till meat is tender, about 2 hours.
- Strain broth and discard onions. Remove meat and set aside to cool.
- Let the stock cool, then strain again and pour into a fat separator. Let stand and pour off stock and discard fat. Alternatively, skim the fat off the top of the stock. I elected to also chill the stock overnight and remove the small amount of congealed fat remaining.
- Shred meat, removing excess fat. Reserve at least 2 cups for the soup.
- To make the soup, add oil to a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the chopped onions, carrots and celery and cook till they begin to soften. Add the mushrooms and cook till they soften and any liquid released evaporates.
- Add the tomatoes, thyme, bay leaf, beef stock, shredded beef and barley to the pot, bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer until the barley is tender, about 45-50 minutes. Taste and season with salt and pepper if needed.