Monday, January 24, 2011

Betty Crocker’s Slow Cooker Beef and Barley Stew

This is a great recipe — quick and easy. It uses a few processed ingredients, though. I used too much thyme, so be careful of that when you make it. I am enjoying exploring the Betty Crocker site (registration required). They have easier recipes than Oprah or King Arthur. So far I have not found any exotic ingredients that are not at our store in the village. Their login and recipe box are very simple, making finding your favorites a simple process. Most of the recipes have videos so if I need more information, it is there. There are fun contests and sharing opportunities on Facebook, too.

Somehow barley makes every soup better, and it's the same with this satisfying blend of beef, frozen and fresh vegetables, and simple seasonings.

Prep Time: 15 Minutes
Total Time: 12:15Hrs Mins
Makes 5 servings

1 lb. boneless beef round steak (1/2 inch thick), trimmed of fat, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
2 cups Green Giant® Frozen Cut Green Beans
1 cup shredded carrots (1 to 2 medium) (I did not shred!)
1/2 cup uncooked regular pearl barley
1 (4.5-oz.) jar Green Giant® Sliced Mushrooms, drained
1 (12-oz.) jar mushroom gravy
2 1/2 cups water
2 teaspoons beef-flavor instant bouillon (I forgot the bouillon, which made the stew a bit bland.)
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1/4 teaspoon pepper

1. In 3 1/2 or 4-quart slow cooker, combine all ingredients; mix well.
2. Cover; cook on Low setting for 10 to 12 hours.

Makes 5 (1 1/2-cup) servings

Make the Most of This Recipe With Tips From The Betty Crocker® Kitchens
Ingredient Info
Barley is an ancient grain known for its use in Scotch broth, beer and whiskey. Natural food stores and co-ops stock barley in many forms, including flakes similar to oatmeal. This recipe calls for pearl barley, which is sold at grocery stores. Pearl barley has had the husk and bran removed before being steamed and polished.

Ingredient Substitution
For easier prep, use 1 pound of cubed beef stew meat in this recipe.

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