Sunday, February 7, 2010

Nivea's Snow Day Soup

Nivea Snow, thank you for your inspiration!

Last week we made the most wonderful snow day soup and I have to share our recipe.

Here it is:

Saute an onion and a couple of stalks of celery in olive oil. When the onion is almost transparent, add a pound or two of stew beef, grass-fed, of course. Brown over high heat. When the beef is browned, add a cup or so of barley, a couple of sliced carrots, a half pound of mushrooms (I used a half pound of local shiitakes and a half pound of portabellas since we had some in the fridge), a tsp of thyme, a bay leaf, a 1/2 tsp to 1 tsp of peppercorns (I really like pepper, you might prefer adding only 4 or 5 peppercorns), sea salt, 3 or 4 cloves of sliced up garlic, and almost a gallon of water.

Bring everything to a boil, then skim off the foam if you wish. Turn down the heat and simmer your soup while you go shovel snow, or read a book or wash clothes. Sometimes I like to make our soups on the woodstove. Just keep an eye on the pot if your stove is very hot. This soup can be simmered for an hour or two or three. The longer it simmers, the more concentrated the flavor. Add more water if it gets too thick. I prefer it fairly cooked down so the beef is meltingly tender and the barley very creamy. When it smells so good you can't wait any more, taste for salt then add a bunch of chopped up kale or chard or spinach. Let the greens cook until tender, then slice some bread, set out some cheese and have the most wonderful peasant feast.

I am so glad we tried those flavors. I think if you added a splash of sherry or vermouth at some point you would be very pleased, but we were out, so I didn't.


Lynne said...

Where have I been? Funny thing is, dear one, I made a soup just like this yesterday with some leftover pot roast and bunches of mushrooms, barley, wine, tomato sauce, and it was yum! I am such a better cook when I forage through the fridge and pantry than when I have a grand plan for a meal. I'm posting now. HA! said...

Lynne! I am so happy to *see* you! I should be calling you but the kids are monopolizing the phone and splitting firewood, so I am making good use of a few spare minutes. I think we must have some similar food genes or something.

Shelly said...

Have been following you for a little while now and want to say thank you for your beautiful photos and your wonderful thoughts. I am in a huge transition in my life right now and it is just one day at a time and I enjoy all the inspiration that others have to share. Right now I am living in Michigan but will be returning back to SW Va, right off the Blue Ridge Parkway (near Mabry Mill)to build a place on my parents 400 acre farm. I use my blog as somewhat of a gratitude journal and as my eye on the prize so to speak and I love women who inspire which in turn empowers others. Many do not realize the impact that they have and I just wanted to share your little impact on me. Thank You and keep sharing those beautiful pics.
Always, Shelly