A comforting soup for cold weather

What's For Dinner Honey, a food blog out of Germany, is hosting a blog roundup with the theme of comfort foods. She says these foods are simple, no frills and easy to prepare. If so, this soup totally fits the bill. It comes together in about an hour, and is just the right weeknight meal for the cold days we've been having.

I got the recipe on the Cooking Light Great Food bulletin board, which is a congenial group and a great source of recipes and cooking tips. Another great source of recipes is food blog events, so be sure to check out What's for Dinner Honey in early February for more comfort food recipes (unfortunately the cold weather will probably still be going strong then).

Hamburger-Barley Soup

Adapted from The Big Book of Soups and Stews via the Cooking Light bulletin board
Serves 6

1 pound lean ground beef
1 large yellow onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
1 can (14.5 oz) petite diced tomatoes
15 oz tomato puree (1/2 of a large can - it's what I had on hand)
1/2 cup pearl barley, thoroughly rinsed
4 cups beef stock or broth
1 cup water
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon dried marjoram
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons sugar
freshly ground black pepper to taste

In a Dutch oven over medium heat, combine meat, onion, and garlic and cook, breaking up meat with a spoon, until it's no longer pink, about five minutes. Add remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, covered, until vegetables and barley are tender, about one hour. Discard bay leaf. This can be made ahead to let the flavors develop. It will thicken if you make it ahead.


Emily said...

It does look comforting!
I've never used barley before. There are a lot of grains that I haven't.
I'm going to go check out this event.

Cakespy said...

This looks very rich and comforting, but good for your body! Score!

Tracy said...

Cakespy, I should have mentioned that it's good for you! It's got veggies and the only fat is from the ground beef. You could add some extra veggies too.

Emiline, try barley sometime! I love it! I have only used it in soup but I've seen recipes for pilafs and casseroles that look good.

Deborah said...

This definitely does look comforting!!

Susan from Food Blogga said...

Oh, this brings me right back to 6th grade. My mom used to make a tomato based soup with hamburg that I adored. Yours looks just as warm and comforting as hers did. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

This certainly is pure comfy food. It looks soothing and warming. Thanks!