Saturday, December 08, 2012
Not So Irish Stew
A few weeks ago we purchase some local lamb, both stew pieces and ground. My original idea was to make traditional Irish stew, but somewhere along the way it morphed into lamb with red wine, rosemary and garlic. I started out with the traditional onions, celery, carrots mix and with the lamb shaken with seasoned flour and browned, a few at a time. Sorry to say I also have lost the amounts I used, so this isn't as much a recipe as a recounting.
Along about the time that I was supposed to braise the browned lamb and veggies with broth I decided I like my lamb marinade for grilling so much that I would add those ingredients, too. Red wine, fresh rosemary, a few cloves of crushed garlic, a couple of bay leaves, a shake of dried orange peel and some freshly ground pepper was added to the chicken broth. A nice long simmer later the meat was tender, almost falling off the bone.The next step could be skipped but it does add to the flavor. I removed the meat and simmered the liquid until it was reduced by about 1/3. Then I removed the bay leaves, added back the meat and I added some red skinned waxy potatoes that I had cut into bite size pieces and cooked until tender in a separate pot. I didn't want red potatoes from the red wine.
I served the stew in bowls because it was on the soupy side. A sprinkle of freshly chopped flat leaf parsley was the final garnish.
This was excellent stew folks! You could really taste the lamb...a good thing if you love lamb...but the potatoes still had their own flavor and the veggies were soft and added a touch of tradition. The red wine and garlic and rosemary provide robust flavor but are not dominant. Great with good bread to sop up the savory liquid. Just have a plate for the bones if yours, like ours, is bone-in stew meat.
Finally have some time to start thinking about Christmas. I did do a couple of online bits of shopping on Cyber Monday, but now have the fun of finding local items, mostly, for family and friends. The crafts scene especially has just blossomed so there are lots and lots of quality hand crafted items this year to choose from. Hard to choose...