It was a good choice! Although I believe that the original recipe was supposed to come out more as a soup, ours turned out as a stew and I'm glad, because it was de-lish! D. and I both agreed that this recipe was definitely going into the repertoire.
If you're inspired by this recipe and would like to make it but don't have a Dutch oven, you could easily whip this up in a large pot.
Gather the ingredients:
8 oz. sirloin steak, cut into bit-size pieces
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, divided
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1/2 to 1 whole onion, chopped
1 large carrot, sliced
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
3/4 cup barley
4 cups (32 oz.) beef broth
1 cup water
1/4 teaspoon salt
Sprinkle steak with a 1/4 teaspoon of pepper. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add steak and cook, stirring often, until browned on all sides. Transfer to a bowl.
Add remaining 2 tablespoons of oil, onion, and carrot to the pot and cook, stirring until beginning to soften. Add tomato paste and thyme and cook, stirring, until the veggies are coated with the tomato paste and beginning to brown.
Add barley, broth, water, salt, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon pepper; bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to maintain simmer; cook until barley is tender, about 40 minutes. Return beef to pot and heat through. Remove from heat and enjoy!
Side note: my husband doesn't really pester me, but I have to tease him sometimes. ;)