This hearty recipe for beef and barley vegetable stew is healthy and filling and so easy to make in the slow cooker. Perfect autumn comfort food!
Welcome to a bonus Secret Recipe Club post. Unfortunately the Secret Recipe Club will be ending next month and so I was especially pleased that I'd chosen to take part in the additional themed event this month. As we're in the heart of autumn, the theme was Fall Dishes. So, as the autumn nights draw in, why not curl up with a big bowl of this slow cooked beef and barley vegetable stew? Perfect for throwing in the slow cooker and coming home to after a long hard day!
This beef and barley vegetable stew is ideal for the slow cooker
I could have gone with a Halloween theme and chosen something made with pumpkin or squash or done some delicious autumn baking but for me, this is the time of year when I start slow cooking again. I love my slow cooker and use it throughout the year but I get even more enthusiastic about it right now.
The inspiration for this beef and barley stew
Luckily, I was assigned to An Affair from the Heart, written by Michaela and she also loves her slow cooker. I chose to make her Vegetable, Beef, Barley and Mushroom Soup but as it turned out to be such a lovely hearty dish I've called it a stew. It's just right for this time of year when there's a chill in the air and the first frosts are about to appear on the ground. I like to imagine myself eating this after a long walk through a beautiful autumn forest, curled up on a sofa in front of a roaring log fire. If only!
As a fellow group b Secret Recipe Club member, I've visited Michaela's blog many times over the past few years but this was the first time I'd been assigned her blog. She has a busy family with 4 children and loves to have everyone at home eating together at the family table. I love the fact that for her blogging represents a creative outlet. As a fellow SAHM, I can definitely relate to that.
Although I went down the savoury slow cooker route this time, there were lots of other recipes that I liked the sound of. I grew up on a farm and at this time of year we were always eating lots of homegrown apples and so I very nearly went for this gorgeous German Apple Cake. If you love apples and cinnamon then do take a look!
I've also been working my way through my own pureed pumpkin and as I love making muffins with the children I almost made these Pumpkin Spice Banana Bread Muffins. Oh well, there's still time!
A simple satisfying stew
Anyway, back to this beef and barley vegetable stew recipe. It may sound simple and it is, but don't confuse that with boring. Sometimes the best recipes are the ones that don't use lots of fancy ingredients but you know you can rely on to provide a tasty satisfying meal. That's exactly what this recipe is. It's really easy to make but still really really tasty.
If you have time to brown the meat first then do but I am often in such a hurry in the mornings that I just throw everything in the slow cooker and it still works. This was perfect and the leftovers were also delicious warmed up the next day for lunch, making it a great #CookOnceEatTwice meal as well.
Beef and Barley Vegetable Stew
- 450 g stewing beef
- 1 tbsp plain flour
- 1 onion diced
- 2 cloves of garlic crushed
- 100 g pearl barley
- 200 g mushrooms cut in half
- 2 carrots sliced
- 2 sticks of celery chopped
- 2 tbsp tomato puree
- pinch Black pepper
- 2 tsp dried thyme
- 800 ml beef stock
- Coat the beef in the flour and put in a saucepan with a little oil to brown the outside. Or if you're really in a hurry skip the browning - It'll still be good.
- Transfer the beef to the slow cooker and add all the other ingredients.
- Cook on low for 8 hours.
More tasty Winter Stews and a Barley recipe
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Do let me know if you make this. Or any of the other recipes here on Searching for Spice. You can leave a comment below!