The other day, in the middle of a bleak, grey Vancouver winter week, I needed to make something warm and comforting. And since I love lamb, this seemed the perfect thing to make. If you don’t love lamb, you could substitute beef.
I really enjoyed the variety of vegetables in this stew. Ass well, a rich broth was created using red wine and beef broth, with the lamb, vegetables and herbs adding flavour. You can use any root vegetables you wish, or just go with the ones I’ve listed in the ingredients.
I found the recipe on this site. It was posted as a pressure cooker recipe, but since I don’t have a pressure cooker, I made it using the slower stove-top method. I know that a lot of people got Instapots for Christmas this year, so this would be a suitable recipe to use that.
In the original recipe Herbes de Provence are used, but I prefer to make my own mix. One reason is that I already have all the herbs that I need to go into it, so I don’t want to buy yet another jar for my spice drawer. As well, I think lavender makes a great sachet to put in the dryer, or to keep clothing drawers smelling fresh – but I really don’t like to eat lavender. So I made my recipe sans lavender. It has thyme, oregano, and tarragon, and there is already a spring of rosemary in the stew, so I didn’t put in more of that.
Serves at least 4 people with some bread, or on top of mashed potatoes.
What you need:
- 1/2 kg / 1 pound lamb, cubed
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- a few grinds of pepper
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 shallot, minced
- 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup dry red wine
- 4 cups beef broth
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary
- 2 fresh bay leaves
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh tarragon
- 1 cup red pearl onions or 1 sweet onion, chopped
- 2 cups mushrooms quartered
- 4 cups root vegetables cubed- I used a little bit each of carrot, potato, parsnip, sweet potato and turnip
- several grinds sea salt and pepper to taste
What you do:
- Place the flour, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add the cubed lamb and toss until all the pieces are coated. Remove the lamb from the bowl, discarding the remainder of the flour.
- Heat a large French oven or pot to medium high heat and pour in the olive oil. Add the lamb to the pot, along with the shallot and garlic, cooking the lamb until it has browned all over.
- Pour the wine and broth into the pot with the lamb, along with the rosemary, bay leaves, thyme, oregano and tarragon. Bring to a boil and cook without a lid on for 1 to 1 & 1/2 hours, stirring from time to time. The lamb should be tender at the end of this cooking time.
Before the lamb cooking time is done, prepare the vegetables. If you are using the pearl onions, blanch them in boiling water for a few seconds, snip off the root end, and pop the onions out of their skins.
When the lamb is tender, add the vegetables to the pot and cook for about 30 minutes, until the vegetables are tender.
Taste before adding pepper, and possibly some salt. If you used a store-bought beef broth you may not need to add salt. If you like you can garnish with a little parsley.
- This makes excellent leftovers, and is possibly even better when reheated.