Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add beef and cook for 5 mins or until browned all over. Transfer to a heatproof plate. Add onion, thyme, celery, carrot, bay leaf and garlic. Cook for 3 mins or until starting to brown. Add cinnamon and cook for 30 seconds or until fragrant. Add stock and 3 cups (750ml) water. Bring to the boil. Return beef to pan. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, covered, for 1 hour or until beef is just tender.
Add barley and return to a simmer. Simmer, uncovered, for 30-40 mins or until barley is tender. Season.
Stir in beans. Cook for 5 mins or until beans are just tender. Serve topped with extra thyme sprigs.