Homemade beef and barley stew

    2 hours 30 min

    My family loves this dish and it goes down really well on the cold winter days. I love using juniper berries as it gives this dish such distinctive flavour. Make sure the beef is slowly simmered until tender. The barley soaks up some of the juices and thickens the rich gravy, making a hearty casserole. Don't forget to add beef gravy granules and cook for 3 minutes - if you like it thick just add more granules to the pot.

    13 people made this

    Serves: 4 

    • 2 sprays low fat cooking spray
    • 500g organic beef chuck or lean braising steak, trimmed and cut into 5cm (2 in) cubes
    • 2 garlic cloves, halved
    • 3 bay leaves
    • 6 juniper berries, lightly crushed
    • 1 sprig fresh thyme
    • 1 large onion, chopped
    • 55g (2 oz) pearl barley
    • 5 large carrots, cut into large chunks
    • 5 celery sticks, sliced
    • 1 swede, cut into chunks
    • 700ml (1 pt 3 fl oz) beef stock
    • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
    • 2 teaspoons beef gravy granules

    Prep:20min  ›  Cook:2hr10min  ›  Ready in:2hr30min 

    1. Spray a large pot or casserole with cooking spray and put over low heat. Add the beef, garlic, bay leaves, juniper berries, thyme and onion. Gently brown for 3 to 4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
    2. Add the barley and cook for 1 minute stirring, then add the beef stock and black pepper, and simmer gently for 1 hour. After 1 hour, add the carrots, celery and swede and cook for an additional hour.
    3. Once you have checked that the meat is cooked, you can then add the beef gravy granules and cook for a further 3 minutes. Remove the bay leaves and thyme stalk before serving. Enjoy! My family loved it they even had seconds.

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