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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Tasty Frugal "Round 2" Soup

I know turning "left overs into soup" isn't a new concept but, wow, it was so good!! Even my picky-butt family really liked this "stoup"- it is so simple, fast, frugal, and soup-er easy!!! 

 I just had to share it.

Picture credit
I used about 1 & 1/4 C  left over top round from a previous meal I had cooked in a crock pot cooker with cream of beefy mushroom  soup and beef stock along with caramelized onions and smothered mushrooms to make this soup. I also had about 3 C of sauce left over "gravy".

Easy Beefy Mushroom & Barley Soup

1 C Pearl Barley
2 1/2 C Beef Stock
Kosher Salt to taste
2 T Butter
Heat stock to boiling over med heat. Once boiling add butter,  kosher salt, and pearl barley- stir to combine and turn to low. Cook on low for about 45 min or until al' dente but not mushy.

1 -Lb cooked Top Round Roast, cut into 1" chunks
3 C Beef Stock/Soup combo gravy
3 T Butter
6 oz mushrooms, sliced
1/2 onion, finely chopped
3 cloves of garlic, minced
Cooked Barley from above
kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper
1-2 t of beef bullion (optional)
Saute mushrooms and onions until soft and fragrant about 3-5 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant about 1 minute. Salt and pepper to taste and add the rest of the ingredients up to bullion. Simmer on low about 20-45 minutes depending on time constraints and preference.

Tips & Hints:
  • I personally like to reduce the the soup to a stew'ish, somewhere between a stew and a soup consistency plus, I enjoy the way the flavor develops after 45 minutes. 
  • I will taste the soup at the end of cooking and add beef bullion if I feel it's needed, this is my preference feel free to omit this if desired.
  • This soup freezes wonderfully.
If you wanted to make this didn't have any cooked beef or left over gravy I would:
  1. Cook the barley as stated above
  2. Brown 1-1 & 1/2 Lbs uncooked seasoned beef with salt and pepper in 1-3 T butter and remove from pan but, keep warm
  3. Then saute` mushroom and aromatics as stated above
  4. Deglaze the pan with 3 C beef stock and add beef back into pan
  5. Cook on low & simmer for 45 minutes or more until beef cooks through and is tender- may take up to 60 minutes.
  6. Taste again and season if needed
  7. To achieve the same richness & decadent consistency as cream of whatever soup I would add 1/4C  heavy cream at end of cooking.

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