Sliced Steak and Mushroom Barley Soup

Any leftover Roasted Garlic Paste can be used to make Chorizo, Roasted Butternut and Zucchini Chili Pot or Swiss Chard Au Gratin French Bread Pizzas.

TOTAL TIME: 2 hr 15 min
Prep: 20 min
Inactive Prep: 10 min
Cook: 1 hr 45 min
 
YIELD: 4 to 6 servings
LEVEL: Easy

ingredients

  • Kosher salt
  • 1 1/3 cups pearl barley
  • 1/2 cup dried porcini mushrooms
  • 1/4 cup EVOO, plus more for drizzling
  • 6 portobello mushroom caps, gills scraped, halved and thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
  • 4 shallots, finely chopped
  • 2 to 3 small stalks celery, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, finely chopped
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup dry sherry
  • 4 cups beef stock
  • 1/3 recipe Roasted Garlic Paste, recipe follows (or 2 heads roasted garlic)
  • 1 pound flatiron steak
  • About 1 1/2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, very finely chopped
ROASTED GARLIC PASTE:
  • 6 heads garlic, tops trimmed off to expose all of the cloves
  • 1 cup EVOO
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
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Directions

Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil. Add the barley and cook to just shy of tender, 25 to 30 minutes. Drain in a sieve and run under cold water, then drain again.

Put the dried porcini mushrooms in a small saucepan with about 2 cups water. Bring to a low boil, then simmer until tender. Transfer the mushrooms with a slotted spoon to a food processor. Pour in all but the last few spoonfuls of the cooking liquid (grit from the mushrooms may settle there). Puree until smooth.

Heat the EVOO in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the portobello mushrooms and cook until browned. Add the thyme, shallots, celery and carrots and season with salt and pepper. Cook until the vegetables are tender, 5 to 6 minutes. Deglaze with the sherry, stirring and scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon. Stir in the stock, porcini puree and Roasted Garlic Paste.

Meanwhile, bring the steak to room temperature and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Drizzle the steak with EVOO, then cook for 7 to 8 minutes, turning once. Let rest on a cutting board for 10 minutes, then thinly slice and cut into bite-size pieces. Dress with the Worcestershire sauce.

Stir the parsley and barley into the soup, then ladle into shallow bowls. Arrange the steak on top of the soup.

Cook's Notes: The cooked barley can be refrigerated in a resealable plastic bag until ready to serve the soup. The soup, without the barley and steak, can be refrigerated for a make-ahead meal. Reheat over medium heat.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Arrange the garlic in a cluster on a large piece of foil and drizzle with 1/4 cup EVOO. Wrap up the garlic in the foil to make a tightly sealed pouch. Roast until very tender, about 45 minutes. Let cool, then squeeze the garlic from the skins into a food processor. Add the remaining 3/4 cup EVOO and the honey and season with salt and pepper. Puree until smooth, then transfer to a small container. (Alternatively, you can mash the garlic paste with a fork instead of using a food processor.)
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