- 1 lb. beef chuck steak (whole)
- 2 leeks, white & light green part only
- 1 c. carrots
- 2 celery ribs
- 10 oz. mushrooms (1 pack)
- 1 red bell pepper
- 1 c. butternut squash
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 1 tsp. rosemary leaves
- 1 heaped tbsp. flour
- 3/4 c. pearl barley (I used quick cook)
- 2–3 quarts of good quality beef stock
- olive oil
- salt & pepper
- 1 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley + sprigs
- hot pickled chili peppers
- parmesan cheese
- In a large Dutch oven, heat 1 tbsp. of olive oil over moderate heat.
- Cut your beef into bite-sized cubes. Season with salt and pepper and dredge in flour, shaking off any excess as you go.
- Add the beef to the pot and brown on all sides (you might have to do this in batches). Using a slotted spoon, remove and transfer to a plate. Set aside.
- Roughly chop the first 6 vegetables and thinly slice your garlic.
- Saute the leeks, carrots, celery, and mushrooms until soft and most of the liquid has evaporated, about 10-12 minutes.
- Add the rest of the vegetables, garlic, and rosemary leaves.
- Add the beef back to the pot.
- Pour in just enough beef stock to cover, about 11/2- 2 quarts. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer (lid on) for about 1 1/2 hours.
- Using a small ladle, skim away any fat on the surface. *See note below.
- Add the barley. Depending on what kind of barley you are using, cooking time will vary. I used the ‘quick cook’ variety which was ready in 10 minutes. Add more stock if necessary.
- Taste your soup. If the meat is very tender, it is ready.
- Add the chopped parsley and season with salt and pepper.
- Serve with parsley sprigs, hot pickled chili peppers, and parmesan cheese (if desired).
*If you are making this in advance, skim away the fat only after the soup has been refrigerated. It will solidify and float to the top, making it easier to remove.