Beef Barley Soup
From Cook's Country
Most beef barley soups recipes that use the slow cooker are thin, bland, and vegetal. We set out to create a recipe in which the star ingredients—beef and barley—shone through. To build flavor from the onset, we browned the beef and vegetables before adding them to the slow cooker. A few tablespoons of tomato paste—which we sautéed with the vegetables to bring out its flavor—gave our Beef Barley Soup a welcome sweetness and a satiny texture. To give our broth even more intense beef flavor, we added a couple of beef bones— easily found at the supermarket—to our beef broth base. Most slow-cooker beef barley soup recipes call for just 1/2 cup barley, but we found we needed twice as much to add the proper substance and heft to the soup.
Serves 6 to 8
Beef shin bones or oxtails will work in place of the marrow bones. Since the barley will absorb liquid as it sits, leftovers should be thinned with water when reheated.
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