This last Sunday T and I had the privilege of Brunching at  Monarch in Hotel Zaza in Houston.  A wonderful place with a wonderful view of  fountains and the contemporary Architecture of the Houston Museum of Fine Arts

Now, barley for brunch sounds ok but, Beef and Barley soup seem a little filling for a starter but, I liked it a LOT.
Imagine the best of beef stew and the added texture of barley combined into a little bowl of wonderful!

The garnish is a toasted piece of rye bread with roasted garlic.


  • Cooking spray
  • 2  pounds  beef stew meat, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2  teaspoons  canola oil
  • 2  cups  chopped leek (about 4 medium)
  • 2  cups  chopped carrot
  • 4  garlic cloves, minced
  • 6  cups  water
  • 1 1/2  teaspoons  salt
  • 1  teaspoon  dried thyme
  • 1/2  teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper
  • 4  bay leaves
  • 2  (14-ounce) cans less-sodium beef broth
  • 1  cup  uncooked pearl barley


Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add half of beef; cook 5 minutes, browning on all sides. Remove from pan. Repeat procedure with remaining beef.

Heat oil in pan over medium-high heat. Add leek, carrot, and garlic; sauté 4 minutes or until lightly browned. Return beef to pan. Add water and next 5 ingredients (through broth); bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 1 hour. Add barley; cook 30 minutes or until beef and barley are tender. Discard bay leaves.

Quote of the day:

“In the age of ACORNs, before the of Ceres, a single barley-corn had been of more value to mankind than all the diamonds of the mines of India”  ~Henry Brooke 

Question of the day:

Soup for Sunday Brunch.  What do you think?