It’s been downright frigid here in Ohio. They cancelled school earlier last week because the wind chills were 20-30 degrees below zero. Paul nearly got frostbite when he went to get gas. And when it’s this cold, and when the weather changes that rapidly, it leaves my whole body aching and me wanting to do nothing more than burrowing under an electric blanket with a mug of something hearty. This is one of my go-to winter dishes that I just can’t get enough of. Use your biggest slow cooker, because the barley will suck up most of the broth – this is a good thing. Sometimes we swap lamb for beef, and add a little dried mint to mellow it out some. Either way, this is a budget friendly meal that will feed an entire household and then some.
Barley Beef Stew
recipe courtesy Taste of Home
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. Cook: 6 hours YIELD:6-8 servings
1-1/2 pounds beef stew meat, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 medium onion, chopped
2 tablespoons canola oil
4 cups water
1 can (15 ounces) tomato sauce
5 medium carrots, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 celery rib, thinly sliced
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 cups fresh or frozen green beans, thawed
2 cups fresh or frozen corn, thawed
3/4 cup medium pearl barley
1. In a large skillet, brown beef and onion in oil until meat is no longer pink; drain. Transfer to a 5-qt. slow cooker. Add water, tomato sauce, carrots, celery, salt, oregano, paprika and pepper.
2. Cover and cook on low for 4-5 hours. Add the beans, corn and barley; cover and cook on low 2 hours longer or until barley, beef and vegetables are tender. Yield: 6-8 servings.
1-1/4 cups equals 299 calories, 10 g fat (3 g saturated fat), 53 mg cholesterol, 896 mg sodium, 32 g carbohydrate, 7 g fiber, 21 g protein.