How to Make Double Beef and Barley Stew in the Crockpot
I have committed a meat crime: I listed "stew meat" as the main ingredient in this recipe, but the truth is, I didn't have stew meat on hand. I had two magnificent ribeyes. So yes, you can use stew meat, sirloin, or filet. Stew and soup is all about using up whatever you have on hand.
I trimmed the ribeye of its fat (I saved the fat for other recipes and/or dog treats) and cut the meat into 1-inch cubes (see photo). You may be wondering why I trimmed the fat off the ribeye and then cooked it in butter. I did this because I feel there is something magical about the flavor of raw flour cooked in butter.
Let's face it. Most of us don't eat enough fruits and vegetables. This recipe contains a lot of protein-packed meat, and I have pumped it full of nutrient-rich veggies. This hearty stew will cure what ails you.
- 1 cup yellow onion, diced
- 2 stalks celery, rinsed and chopped
- 1 large carrot, sliced
- 3 green onions, diced, white bottoms and green tops separated
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 bunch spinach, rinsed, stems removed
- 8 ounces mushrooms, sliced
- 14.5 ounce can petite diced tomatoes
- 32 ounces beef broth, reduced sodium
- 1-2 pounds stew meat, cubed (amount depends on how meaty you want the stew)
- 8 ounces beef sausage, sliced and quartered
- 2/3 cup red wine
- 1 tablespoon flour
- 1 tablespoon butter
- salt & pepper, to taste
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/2 teaspoon dried marjoram
- 1/2 cup barley
- 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
- Put the stew meat in a bowl and sprinkle the flour over it. Salt and pepper. Toss with your hand until the flour is absorbed. In a large (nonstick) saute pan, heat 1 tablespoon of butter to medium-high. Add the meat and turn to coat with the butter. Once coated, let the meat sit, turning only occasionally, to develop browning. The purpose of this step is not to cook the meat, but to brown and develop the flavor the meat.
- While the meat is cooking, pour the beef broth, tomatoes, red wine, and water into a large crock pot. Add the bay leaf and spices. Transfer the browned stew meat to the crock pot.
- Lower the heat to medium and put all of the vegetables (except the green onion tops and spinach) into the pan. Add the sausage. There should be some residual oil in the pan from the stew meat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions begin to brown. The vegetables should not be fully cooked, as they will cook in the crock pot. Add the garlic and toss for an additional minute. Transfer vegetables and sausage to the crock pot.
- Add the barley to the crock pot, stir, and cook on high for 3-1/2 hours. Add the spinach and parsley to the crock pot and continue cooking on low for about an hour. The stew will hold over low heat until you're ready to eat. Use the green onion tops as a garnish when serving.
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© 2017 Melissa Althen