Son of a Gun Stew

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Son of a Gun Stew
2 lbs beef stew meat
6 chopped potatoes
1 (15 oz) can diced or stewed tomatoes
1 chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 cups carrots, chopped
1 cup EACH celery, corn, peas
1/4 cup broccoli
3 qts. water
1/2 cup hulled barley (not pearled, please, see note below)
3 tsp salt
2 tsp pepper
3 bay leaves
4 tsp fresh parsley, minced
1/4 tsp EACH dried basil and oregano
cornstarch or arrowroot powder to thicken

In a large dutch oven or pot, heat a small amount of olive oil. Add garlic and chopped meat and sear meat on all sides. Add onions, tomatoes, potatoes, barley, seasonings and water. Cook for 2 hours. Add remaining vegetables and cook 1 more hour, adding water if needed while cooking. Thicken with cornstarch.

To tell you the truth, I seared the meat, then threw everything in at once except the cornstarch and cooked it for a couple of hours, and it was done. This could easily be done in the crockpot, as well.

I was out of hulled barley, so I used brown rice instead. Pearl barley is to hulled barley as white flour is to wheat flour and iceburg lettuce is to romaine lettuce. Don't bother.

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