Today was finally a cool and breezy, Autumn feeling day. The perfect kind of day for a pot of soup. This is a recipe I got from a quilt shop years ago. I have changed it up a wee bit, and I make this hearty, comforting soup often. The ingredients are all shown above, with the exception of the stew beef that I had already browned and had simmering on the stove in my Dutch Oven. I began by browning 1.5 pounds of stew meat in a bit of olive oil, and then once brown, toss in a couple bay leaves, and about 2 tsp of Vegit seasoning and let simmer for about an hour with lid on. In another pan, saute one brown onion, several cloves of minced garlic, and 3-4 carrots til soft, about 3-5 min. Add this to meat and then add 4 cans of beef broth, 1 large can of diced stewed tomatoes, and salt and pepper to taste, and let this simmer on low for a couple of hours. About 2 hours before serving, add 1 cup pearl barley and replace lid and continue to simmer until barley is done. Also, add the zest of one whole orange to soup pot. Just before serving, saute a pound of mushrooms in 3/4 stick of butter. When soft, add about 1/2 cup full bodied red wine, reduce slightly and add to soup pot. Garnish with fresh parsley and enjoy! I meant to get more pics of cooking, but wound up taking this to Gennifer and Jake's and finished cooking it there and then had dinner with them.
In my hectic week I forgot to post a favorite cooking tool. For this week, I am featuring a favorite tool called a microplane. I love to zest oranges and other citrus into dishes with this tool. It is also useful for grating whole nutmeg, and ginger and many other things. GREAT tool. I have a small hand held one too that I love for nutmeg! I ALWAYS use whole nutmeg, and grate it myself. The flavor is amazing!
PS Usually I like to use low sodium beef broth, but Stater's only had their store brand. But the low sodium is way better, I think.