|15 min||2 h||2|
|227 gm||Beef, stewing beef|
|1/3 pinch||Salt (to taste)|
|1/3 dash||Black pepper (to taste)|
|2/3 tbsp||Extra virgin olive oil|
|3 1/3 small mushroom(s)||Button mushrooms (baby bella's, quartered )|
|1/3 cup||White onion (chopped)|
|1/3 cup diced||Celery (chopped)|
|1/3 cup chopped||Carrots (chopped)|
|2 clove(s)||Garlic (6-8 cloves, minced)|
|2 cup||Beef broth (stock), low-sodium|
|2/3 leaf||Bay leaf|
|1/8 tsp, ground||Thyme, dried|
|1/3 potato||Potato (large, shredded)|
|1/4 cup||Pearl barley, dry (rinsed)|
Season the stew meat with a good pinch of salt and pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large pot or in the instant pot over medium high heat. Add ½ the stew meat and brown on all sides for about 2-3 minutes total. Remove meat to a plate and repeat with the second batch and the second tablespoon of oil.
Add the mushroom to the pot and brown the mushrooms for 1-2 minutes or until they start picking up the brown bits left behind by the meat. Remove the mushrooms to the same plate as the stew meat.
If needed, add a little more oil to the pot and the mirepoix mix. Cook the veggies for 4-5 minutes or until the onions soften and become translucent. Add the garlic and cook for an additional 30 seconds.
IF USING A SLOW COOKER: Add the softened veggies, stew meat, mushrooms, bay leaves, dried thyme, water, and beef broth to the slow cooker and allow the soup to cook on the high setting for 3 hours or on the low setting for 6 hours.
IF USING THE INSTANT POT: Add the stew meat, mushrooms, bay leaves, dried thyme, water, and beef broth the to sautéed veggies in the instant pot, cover and pressure cook the meat for 13-16 minutes depending on the size of the stew meat. Allow the pressure to release before removing the lid.
FOR BOTH METHODS: Add the shredded potatoes and the barley and allow the soup to cook on the high setting (for the instant pot you hit the slow cook button) for 1 hour or until the potatoes and barley cook through. Season with additional seasonings to taste. Serve warm with chopped parsley on top and a loaf of crusty bread or crackers.
Sometimes I like to spice things up by adding a little pinch of red pepper flakes along with the dried thyme too but this is purely optional.