On page 52 in The 33 Doctors of the Church, St. Gregory recounts a memory of a soup that his dear friend and fellow Doctor of the Church St. Basil had served him. So, it seems very fitting to choose a soup as a recipe for the lesson on these two saints.


1 lb sirloin steak cut into 1/2 cubes

1/4 cup flour

1 Tablespoon dried basil (I used the lightly dried kind in the produce area of the grocery market)

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 Tablespoons oil

1 can (14.5 ounce) diced tomatoes with basil, garlic and oregano

1 cup diced carrots

4 cups water

1 teaspoon beef bouillon

2 teaspoons sugar

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1/2 cup quick cooking barley

additional fresh or lightly dried basil

Directions: In shallow dish, combine flour, basil, pepper and salt and toss meat to coat. Gently press flour mixture into meat.

Heat oil in stockpot. Add meat to hot oil and brown sides.

Once browned, add any additional flour mixture as well as carrots, water, bouillon, tomatoes, sugar and Worcestershire sauce. Bring to boiling, cover and simmer for 15 minutes.

Add barley and simmer for another 10. Add additional basil if desired and serve.

Note: barley adds a wonderful addition to the flavor and texture. However, it continues to absorb liquid and will turn the soup into a casserole!