Vegetable, Beef, and Barley Stew

Vegetable, Beef, and Barley Stew

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • Coarse salt and pepper
  • 1 pound beef chuck, cut into 3 pieces
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 thyme sprigs
  • 4 cups chicken or beef broth, divided
  • 1/2 pound small potatoes, halved
  • 1/2 medium butternut squash (1 pound), peeled and diced medium (2 cups)
  • 1/2 cup pearl barley

DIRECTIONS

  1. In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high. Season beef with salt and cook until pieces are browned on all sides, about 6 minutes. Transfer to a 5-to-6-quart slow cooker.

  2. To the skillet, add remaining tablespoon oil, the garlic, and thyme and saute until fragrant, 1 minute. Add 2 cups broth and cook, stirring and scraping up browned bits with a wooden spoon. Transfer mixture to slow cooker.

  3. Add potatoes, squash, barley, 2 cups water, and remaining 2 cups broth to slow cooker, cover, and cook on high until meat is very tender, 4 hours (or 8 hours on low). Using two forks, shred beef. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

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