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Turn up the heat: warm winter recipes

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The winter season is in full swing, so warm hearty meals are the way to go… Soup can melt the heart of every snowman—make it nutritious and easy to cook, and you win over the whole family, home chef included! Plus, whip up a Spicy Beef and Peanut Stir-fry for a hot, worldly, delicious dinner (who needs takeout?!). LG Chef Peter Thornhill’s January recipes make a great addition to your winter menu. It’s time to turn up the heat in the kitchen!

Barley Soup

Total cook time: 30 minutes | Yields: 4-5 servings


2 tablespoons butter

2/3 cup carrots, cut into half moons

2/3 cup onions, medium dice

1/2 cup celery, sliced

1 cup quick barley

2 cups water

4 cups low sodium beef stock

1 bay leaf

3-4 sprigs of thyme

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper


  • Warm up a large pot over medium heat, with 2 tablespoons of butter melting inside.
  • Once the butter is completely melted and slightly brown, toss in 2/3 cup of diced carrots and stir them to coat and soften for about 2 minutes.
  • Next, add in 1 cup of onions and 1/2 cup of celery and again stir it to coat. In the course of just a couple of minutes, they’ll start to turn translucent and soften. Once you have reached that stage, you can add your cup of barley and keep stirring.
  • You just want to lightly toast the barley, so once the grains start to produce a bready aroma, you’re ready to add the liquid: add the 2 cups of water and 4 cups of low sodium beef stock. At this point you can crank your heat up to high and let this come to a boil.
  • Once your soup has hit a boil, toss in a bay leaf and a few sprigs of thyme and give everything a quick stir, reduce the heat to low and pop a lid over the top. This will need to simmer for about 20 minutes.
  • After 20 minutes, give it a taste to make sure the barley and carrots are nice and tender, and also taste for seasoning. Add a teaspoon each of salt and black pepper. Your soup is ready!

    Spicy Beef & Peanut Stir Fry

    Total cook time: 10 minutes | Yields: 2 servings

    Cooking utensil: Wok


    2 teaspoons vegetable oil

    2 cloves of garlic, minced

    2 Thai red chilies, sliced thin

    1/4 yellow or white onion, sliced thin

    2 teaspoons sesame oil

    1/2 pound beef (sirloin or round steak), sliced thin

    1 tablespoon soy sauce

    1 teaspoon black pepper

    1/2 teaspoon salt

    2 tablespoons chopped peanuts

    Picked cilantro and sliced green onions, to garnish


  • Mince two cloves of garlic and 2 Thai red chilies. Slice a quarter of an onion thinly and then cut a piece of beef sirloin or round steak into thin strips about 1/8-inch thick.
  • Turn your most powerful burner to high and set up your wok to heat up.
  • Add the vegetable oil and let that heat up for just a second. Pop the garlic and chilies in first and toss them to coat. They only need a few seconds’ head start.
  • Next, add the onions, along with a 1/2 teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Get everything coated and continue tossing for about 30 seconds, just to soften the onions a little bit.
  • Now add the rest of the ingredients, starting with the beef. Give that a quick toss and then add your sesame oil, soy sauce, and the leftover black pepper. Continue to stir everything for another 2 minutes or so to allow the beef to cook through.
  • Now you can plate and garnish your stir fry—serve it over rice, noodles, or on its own.