Until a few years ago I never made beef barley soup. I’m actually not a huge fan of soup in general. I have my favorites—French onion and chicken soup avgolemeno, but that’s pretty much it. My family, on the other hand, loves just about any variety. So one day when I made pot roast and was left with enough to feed an additional family, I decided to turn the rest into soup—beef barley soup. I never made it before and I didn’t search for a recipe.
When my co-workers read that my last blog entry was for pot roast they knew beef barley soup would follow and I would be coming into work with containers for each of them. I’m so predictable.
It’s really easy to do this and a great way to morph one meal into a whole new one.
Here’s how I do it:
Shred all the leftover meat from the pot roast and chop any remaining vegetables. Set aside. Chop a large onion, 2 to 3 carrots, a heart of celery and a 16-ounce package of mushrooms (white or bella). Add 1-tablespoon vegetable oil and 2 tablespoons butter to a large pot and sauté the chopped veggies until tender. Add 8 to 10 cups of beef broth or stock. This amount will vary depending on how much leftover meat you have. Add a cup of red wine, the shredded meat, the leftover veggies from the pot roast and all the leftover gravy. When the soup comes to a boil add a cup of barley and simmer until the barley is tender. The soup should already be seasoned from the pot roast gravy, but taste and adjust as needed.
I think you will be happy with the result. The flavors are richer and the meat is very tender.