This is really a soup recipe that I turned into a stew by making the vegetables chunky and adding leftover roast beef I had chopped.
1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
1 1/2 cups chopped onion
1 cup chopped carrot
2 cups mushrooms (can be cremini, Portobello, or even button)
1/2 cup uncooked pearl barley (toast the barley for a nuttier flavor)
4 3/4 cups beef broth low sodium
1/3 cup finely chopped celery
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh or 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
a splash of Sherry adds another good flavor
Adding the beef is optional and is not in the nutritional guide.
Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion, carrot, and mushrooms; sauté approx. 7 minutes or until golden brown. Stir in barley, and sauté 2 minutes. The sauteing of the barley gives the stew a nice nutty flavor. Add stock, celery, and salt, and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20-30 minutes. Add thyme, and cook 5 minute
4 servings (serving size: 1 1/2 cups)