- 2 pounds stew meat (nicely marbled beef chunks)
- salt and pepper
- 2 tablespoons oil
- 10 cups water
- 3 mounded tablespoons good quality beef base*
- 3 stalks celery (about 2 cups), chopped
- 2 onions, chopped
- 5 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 large potato, peeled and shredded, about 2 cups (I diced mine really fine)
- 3-4 large carrots, peeled and shredded, about 2 cups (I diced mine really fine)
- 1 cup barley, rinsed
- Generously salt and pepper the beef. In a large stockpot, heat the oil over medium-high heat.
- When it is very hot, add about 1/3 of the meat. Brown for about 1-2 minutes, then turn to brown the other side. Remove to a plate when it is browned on all sides.
- Repeat with remaining meat in 2 more batches. (If you add it all at once it will steam the meat instead of browning it–not what you want.)
- When all the meat is browned, add all the meat back to the pot and then add the chopped celery, onions, and garlic and saute slightly so that all the flavors mingle.
- Add 10 cups of water. Add 3 healthy tablespoons beef stock concentrate. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat to medium-low. Simmer for about 2 hours with the lid on.
- When the meat is tender and you can break it apart easily with a wooden spoon, add the shredded potato, carrots and barley. Bring to a boil, then continue to simmer on low for another hour or so, or until the barley tender.