MONDAY MEMORY: No Soup For You

I had big plans to make my mom’s delicious Vegetable Beef Soup.  It’s really more of a stoup–that is the way  Rachael Ray would describe it anyway.  It’s thicker than a soup but thinner than a stew.  It’s everything you would expect from a hearty one pot meal.  It has large pieces of beef, tomatoes, mixed vegetables, barley…and lots of love.  I always thought that this recipe was fairly complicated.  About a month before my mom’s second surgery, she taught me this soup, which had quickly become my husband’s favorite meal and he requested that I learned it immediately.  He loved the tender beef chunks and jokingly even called it beef chunk soup.  Just the glimpse of the beef stew meat package got him excited for the night he would come home to this lovely one pot wonder bubbling away on the stovetop.  I had big plans, but then life got in the way.

 

I was asked by some of my Lisle Floodies to attend a Village Board Meeting.  Lots of discussion about storm water ordinance changes was supposed to be on the agenda.  It ended up being removed but t was nice to get together with the girls and get caught up anyway.  I realized I had been neglecting my previous interest in local government–I need to try to get to more meetings.  Needless to say, dinner for my husband consisted of some leftovers.  I’ll be making this soup tomorrow.  I’m sure memories of dinner at the kitchen table in the Ridgeway house will fill my head and heart at first bite.  But until then…NO SOUP FOR YOU!

 

Mom’s Vegetable Beef Barley Soup

 

1½-2 pounds beef stew meat (trimmed and cut into bite size pieces)

2-32 ounce containers of beef broth

2-15 ounce cans mixed vegetables (drained)

1-14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes (NOT drained)

5 ounces of Quaker Medium Pearled Barley

2 tablespoons vegetable or canola oil

 

  1. Heat oil on high in a large heavy bottom soup pot.
  2. Add trimmed beef and brown on all sides.
  3. Add 1 carton of beef broth.
  4. Let simmer on medium-low until beef is tender and broth is deeply flavored (about 30 minutes).
  5. Add ½ a carton broth and the barley.
  6. Stir and allow to simmer on low until thickened and barley is softened (about 35-45 minutes)
  7. Add broth as necessary.
  8. Adjust consistency (add some broth or some barley) until a stoup like consistency
  9. About 20 minutes before serving add drained mixed vegetables and NOT drained tomatoes.
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