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Mom'S Mushroom Barley Soup

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  Mushrooms 6 Ounce
  Butter/Margarine 3 Tablespoon
  Garlic 1 Clove (5 gm), minced
  Dried marjoram 1 Teaspoon
  Beef broth 3⁄4 Cup (12 tbs)
  Canned regular strength beef broth 14 1⁄2 Ounce (1 Can)
  Water 1⁄2 Cup (8 tbs)
  Salt 1⁄2 Teaspoon
  Black pepper 1⁄8 Teaspoon
  Bay leaf 1
  Ground beef 1⁄2 Pound
  Potatoes 1 Pound, peeled, cut in 3/4 inch cubes
  Barley 3⁄4 Cup (12 tbs)
  Packed spinach leaves 2 Cup (32 tbs)
  Milk 1 Cup (16 tbs)

Wipe mushrooms with a damp cloth.
Set aside 2 mushrooms; chop remaining mushrooms.
Melt butter or margarine in a 4-quart pot.
Add chopped mushrooms and garlic.
Cook, stirring, over medium-high heat, until mushrooms darken.
Sprinkle marjoram over cooked mushrooms.
Add broth, water, salt, pepper and bay leaf.
Brown ground beef in a medium skillet until no longer pink.
Drain off drippings.
Add browned beef, potato cubes and barley to pot; bring to a boil.
Reduce heat.
Cover and simmer until potatoes and barley are tender, about 30 minutes.
Discard bay leaf.
Cut spinach leaves in strips.
Stir spinach and milk into pot.
Cover and cook 5 minutes longer.
Do not boil.
Slice reserved mushrooms.
Ladle hot soup into individual bowls.

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