Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Mushroom, Beef, Barley & Lentil Soup

Mushroom, Beef, Barley & Lentil Soup
Adapted from Kitchen Sense

Printable Recipe

Hands on time: 20 minutes or so
Cooking time: 3 hours or so
Serves 8-10 freezes well

2 ½ lb/1kg beef short ribs (flanken)
1-2 beef marrow bones
1 (14oz/ 400ml) can diced tomatoes with juice ( I really stock up on fire roasted when I can find them)
¾ cup brown lentils, picked over for stones, rinsed & drained
½ cup pearl barley
1 large yellow onion, diced small
2 large carrots, peeled and finely chopped
1 fennel bulb, finely chopped (the book calls for celery, but I love fennel more as a base ingredient)
5 -6 sprigs fresh thyme (the book suggests Italian/flat leaf parsley)
1 bay leaf
4 cups beef broth + 2 cups water or mushroom soaking liquid
½ -1lb/225-450g mushrooms, sliced (I love Cremini, Portobello & Porcini work well too)
1 handful dried wild mushrooms, rehydrated in hot water for 10 minutes, drained & chopped add the liquid to the soup
1 tbsp olive oil or butter
1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves, chopped
Salt & freshly ground pepper to taste

1. In a large soup pot or Dutch oven, combine the ribs, soup bones, tomatoes, lentils, barley, onion, carrots, fennel, thyme and bay leaf. Note: Normally I sear the meat before adding anything else, but I decided to forego this step and follow the book… great idea, saves time, no spatter and the meat tastes as tender at the end of the day.

2. Add the liquid (beef broth & mushroom soaking liquid or water). Heat at medium high and bring to a boil. Skim off any foam that rises to the surface. Lower heat to simmer and cover for 2 hours, stirring occasionally. Remove bay leaf & thyme or parsley sprigs.

3. Heat oil or butter in a skillet over medium high heat. Add the sliced mushrooms and chopped thyme leaves and sauté until the mushrooms are golden. Add to the soup and continue to simmer for another hour or until the meat falls off the bones.

4. Remove the bones, shred or dice the meat and return to the soup. Taste for seasoning

Leftovers: fridge – 2 weeks; freezer – several months

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