Sunday, May 06, 2007

Lamb Stew

Mike's parents have a lamb recipe that is so good, Mike has dubbed it "Lamb of God." Unfortunately, I can't seem to find the sheet of paper where I copied that recipe, so instead I did some experimenting in the kitchen today, and tried to make a lamb stew from scratch.

Here's the recipe I used.

500 g lamb for stewing (shoulder, shank, neck or leg), chopped into cubes and excess fat trimmed
salt and pepper to taste
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 garlic, finely chopped
2 medium native onions, finely chopped
1 tsp dried rosemary
1 tsp dried thyme
1-1/2 cup water
1 tsp sugar
4 native tomatoes, diced
1 large carrot, peeled and thickly sliced

1. Sprinkle the lamb with salt and pepper.

2. Heat olive oil in large pot over medium-high heat. Brown the lamb in batches, about 4 to 5 minutes per batch. Return all the lamb into the pot.

3. Add garlic and stir until fragrant.

4. Add onions, dried rosemary and dried thyme. Saute for a few minutes until onions have begun to caramelize (about 5 minutes).

5. Stir the sugar into the water until the sugar has dissolved. Add the water to the pot. Bring to a boil, then add the tomatoes and carrot. Wait until the stew boils again.

6. Reduce heat to medium-low, then cover with lid slightly ajar. Allow to simmer until lamb is tender (about 45 minutes to 1 hour). If stew dries out, add more water, 1/4 cup at a time. Season with salt to taste.

7. Serve stew with steamed rice.

Serves 4.
Calorie count: approx. 420 calories per serving.

Verdict: I'm proud of this dish. It's very flavorful. Mike liked it too.

As an afterthought, I threw in a chopped up chorizo sausage in the last few minutes of simmering, to make the dish taste a little more Spanish, although I added it too late to alter the flavor of the stew much. Maybe next time I'll try putting in the chorizo from the beginning, or replacing the carrot with chorizo and bacon to see how that'll taste. I'll try it next time and I'll let you know.

Just a quick note about the teaspoon of sugar. When Mike and I went to England on honeymoon we found out that English tomatoes are very sweet, unlike Filipino tomatoes which are rather sour! Since then, whenever I've encountered a Western recipe calling for tomatoes, I've continued to use native tomatoes but have added a little sugar, to bring the overall taste of the dish close to what was originally intended.

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