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Spicy Lamb Stew: A Gourmet recipe


Do you remember Gourmet magazine? (If you do, your secret is safe with us!)

Gourmet was the first US magazine devoted totally to food and wine. Founded by Earle R. MacAusland (1890-1980) the first edition hit the streets in 1941. Sadly in November 2009, the monthly publication was laid to rest due to a decline in advertising revenue.

But the Gourmet brand continues in the form of books, television and special edition magazines, covering foodie niches like grilling, quick recipes, holiday and comfort foods. In fact, many of Gourmet’s recipes can still be found on online cooking sites.

Every issue of Gourmet was filled with glossy photos, great articles and easy-to-prepare recipes – including this one that requires – you guessed it – lamb cuts, either from the shoulder or already prepared stewing meat.

One of our clients, who purchased lamb cuts from us this winter, said that she was eager to try this particular recipes shared by her sister (and then to us, and now you).

The printed recipe is kept carefully entombed in an ancient, dog-eared, faded issue of Gourmet [October 1986], pocked with grease marks and cooking notes. Probably worth a mint today, it was purchased for $1.75.

Apparently, this recipe is not just a tasty-hearty-make-ahead-and-freeze-meal, it’s perfect for ‘effortless entertaining’.


Spicy Lamb Stew with Sweet Potato Rosettes

Serves: 6

Pairs well with: Chablis (dry white) or Barolo (robust red)

Serve with fresh bread.

  • 6T Vegetable oil
  • 3 lbs Boneless lamb shoulder/stewing meat, cut into 1″ pieces
  • 2C Finely-chopped onion
  • 1T Minced garlic
  • 2T Minced peeled fresh ginger root
  • 1 1/2T Ground cumin
  • 1T Ground coriander
  • 1/4C flour
  • 2C Chicken stock – combined w/1C Water
  • 1/4C Fresh lime juice
  • 2 Three-inch green hot chilies – seeded, minced
  • 2 C Chopped, drained canned Italian plum tomatoes
  • Salt – to taste
  • Freshly-ground black pepper – to taste
  • 1 lb Spinach – coarse stems discarded, washed well and drained
  • 3C Cauliflower florets
  • 3C Sweet potatoes – (about 2 1/2 lbs) (large)
  • Russet potato
  • 3T Unsalted butter – softened

In a 3-quart baking dish heat the oil over moderately-high heat until it is hot but not smoking and in it brown the lamb, in batches, transferring it with a slotted spoon as it is browned to a bowl.

In the fat remaining in the dish cook the onion over moderately-low heat, stirring occasionally, until it is softened, add the garlic, and the ginger root, and cook the mixture, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes. Add the cumin, coriander, and flour, and cook the mixture, stirring, for 3 minutes. Add the stock, combined with 1 cup water, heated, whisking, and simmer the mixture for 5 minutes.

Add the lime juice, the chilies, the tomatoes, the lamb and any juices that have accumulated in the bowl, and salt and pepper to taste and simmer the mixture, covered, skimming it occasionally***, for 1 hour and 30 minutes, or until the lamb is tender. [Our client shares that skimming off excess fat is definitely worth the effort.]

While the mixture is simmering, in a large saucepan steam the spinach in the water clinging to the leaves, covered, over moderately-high heat, stirring occasionally, for 2 to 3 minutes, or until it is just wilted. Drain the spinach in a colander, refresh it under cold water, and squeeze it dry in a kitchen towel. Add the cauliflower to the lamb mixture, simmer the mixture for 5 minutes, and stir in the spinach.

That’s the base. Cool to room temperature, and keep covered well. It can be frozen for up to 2 weeks. Let the stew thaw, covered, in the refrigerator before continuing with the recipe.

Bake the potatoes in a preheated 425 degrees oven, pricking them several times with a fork after 30 minutes, for 1 hour, or until they are very tender, and let them stand until they are cool enough to be handled.

Peel the potatoes, force them through a food mill fitted with the medium disk over a bowl, and stir in the butter and salt and pepper to taste. Transfer the mixture to a pastry bag fitted with a large decorative tip and pipe it into 2-inch rosettes around the edge of the baking dish.
Bake the stew in a preheated 400 degree oven for 20 to 30 minutes, or until it is heated through and the rosettes are browned lightly.

Have you got a lamb recipe you’d like to share? We’d love to add it to our collection!

Notes from: EatYourBooks.com

Valensbrae Farm – Pasture-raised Ontario lamb. Seasonal farm gate sales of lamb cuts. In addition to Dorset & Shetland sheep, Valensbrae Farm has pot-bellied pigs, Red Sexlinks layers, honey bees and two llamas Ben & Jerry. A family-run operation led by Ted Stark.

1527 Regional Road 97 | Puslinch | 905-659-7253 | [email protected]

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