Beef with Mushroom and Barley Stew

Original recipe: One Pot of the Day 365 recipes for every day of the year By: Kate McMillan I added my own notes in brackets. 

Number of Servings: 
4-6
Yield: 
lots
Prep Time: 
60 Minutes
Cook Time: 
4 Hours
Ingredients: 
  • 1oz (30g) dried porcini mushrooms, (I used dried chanterelles)
  • 2 cups (500mL) boiling water
  • 2Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2lb of beef chuck, cut into 2" pieces (I used stewing beef)
  • 2 yellow onions, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced 1lb of small cremini mushroom or other fresh mushroom. (I used white mushrooms which were quite large, I quartered the largest of the bunch to help with the saute them)
  • 2 Cups (500mL) Beef broth, (I used Campbell's brand but you could go with either homemade or organic gluten free stuff if you need to)
  • 1/2 cup of (125g) of pearl barley, (I didn't think that was a lot but these bad boys expand when cooked so don't go overboard with adding more)
  • 3 carrots finely chopped
  • 2 parsnips peeled and finely chopped, (use small parsnips if you can, I used two very large parsnips which were over 1" in diameter at their thickest part and the stew took on a very parsnip-y floral taste and scent. When I do this recipe again I'm going to use larger carrots and use only 1 parsnip).
  • Salt and fresh ground pepper
  • 2Tbsp of chopped fresh dill, (I omitted this)
Instructions: 
  1. Put the dried mushrooms in a bowl
  2. Add boiling water and soak for 20min.
  3. Line a sieve with a double-layer of cheese cloth and place of a bowl, drain the mushrooms.  Save the soaking liquid.
  4. Rinse the mushroom with cold water and chop finely.
  5. Preheat the oven to 300F (150C).
  6. In a large heavy pot, melt butter of medium-high heat (I used a medium sized roasting pan because I don't have a heavy pot).
  7. Working in batches, sear the beef in the butter, turning often, until browned on all sides, ~10min.
  8. Transfer to a plate. I found that I didn't have a lot of butter left in the pan so I added a bit more, this is likely due to the fact I used a roasting pan.
  9. Add onions and garlic saute until softened (5-7min).
  10. Stir in the rehydrated mushrooms.
  11. Add fresh mushrooms
  12. Reduce the heat to medium, saute for another 5 min until they start to brown and release their liquid. (I added another Tbsp more butter because the pan was looking a bit dry and I didn't want the mushrooms to stick to the pan).
  13. Stir in the mushroom liquid and the beef broth.
  14. Return the beef to the pot, I made sure all the drippings went into the pot as well.
  15. Cover the pot and place into the oven and cook for 2hrs.
  16. Stir in the barley and 1-Cup (250mL) of water into the pot and continue cooking for 1-hr.
  17. Stir in the carrots and parsnips, cover and cook until the barley, carrots and parsnips are tender, about 30min.
  18. Season with Salt and pepper. Garnish with Dill and enjoy.
Notes: 
  • The beef and mushrooms are so meaty and tender, combined with the barley which is a bit chewy, it's a real treat to eat.
  • This is an amazing comfort meal. I'd love to try this using a variety bag of dried mushrooms next time.
  • I thought I was going to run out of room in the roasting pan because the white mushrooms were so large but they shrunk down nicely
  • This recipe is time consuming but it's worth it, prep it early in the day and let the house fill with the aromas.
  • The stew tastes even better the second and third day as leftovers.
  • Ok, it will take about 3.5hrs total to cook and the prep time really depends on how organized you are. :)
  • I did this recipe in a roasting pan which might explain why I had to keep adding butter to saute the onion, mushrooms and garlic.
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Total votes: 319