Recipe 5: Beef Barley Soup

~0.75-1 lb bottom round steak
~ 1 medium onion
~ 4 cups beef broth
~ 4 cups water
~ 1/2 cup pearl barley
~ 1 bay leaf
~ 3/4 tsp salt
~ 1/4 tsp pepper
~ 2 medium potatoes
~ 3 medium carrots
~ 3 medium stalks celery
~ 2 tsp thyme
~ 1/2 tsp salt

1/ Remove all visible fat from meat and cut into bite sized pieces. Heat dutch oven over medium heat. Spray with vegetable oil. Cook meat until brown.

2/ Add onions and cook to soften.

3/ Add beef broth, water, bay leaf, 3/4 tsp salt, pepper, and barley. Bring to a boil and cover. Simmer for approx 1 hr until beef is tender.
4/ Stir in remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil. Simmer, partially covered for 20-25 minutes until vegetables are tender. Remove bay leaf prior to serving.

Great! I definitely enjoyed this soup! At the kroger they didn't have a full lb of beef, so it might be a little better with a bit more beef. The thyme really came out and gave this the kick it needed (it was pretty blah and bland when i tasted before adding the veggies). However, it was still good. And, with all of the veggies and barley and potatoes it was pretty filling. The recipe said it made 6 servings -- and they are pretty good sized to say the least!
In case you didn't notice, I have a thing for soups. They are yummy and can be filling yet healthy if done properly. They are nice and easy to reheat as leftovers when I get home late or have post-work plans :) Plus they just make me feel all warm and fuzzy and happy inside.

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