Winter-inspired stew recipes are some of our favorite dishes to share with friends and family this time of year. When there’s a chill in the air and mouths to feed, stewing is a way to press some amazing flavors together in short-order while extending portions. This makes them not only perfect for warming tummies, they’re some of the best values in the kitchen.
Today we’re sharing our Rustic Lamb and Coconut Curried Potato Stew with you.
A couple things to note before you jump into the recipe.
1. The cut of your lamb will make a big difference in preparation, cook time, and even flavor. Fillet and chops are some of the best tasting; juicy and flavorful, but they’re also some of the most expensive cuts of the lamb, so when feeding a good size group, many cooks will turn to the rump or shank roast cuts to get the job done.
While each of these cuts have their benefits, the process of cooking them can vary greatly because of the density of the meat and if not prepared properly, you could be left with a dry and tough chew.
The rump roast, for example, is full of flavor but is a tougher cut of meat. So, to get this ready for a stew, you’re actually going to limit cook time. This is a cut that can tougher and tougher or more chalky/grainy in texture the longer it cooks. The best way to prepare this cut for your stew is to give it a few pounds with a good tenderizing hammer, then cut it up (against the grain) into cubes and give it a 20-min sea salt and garlic bath. Then you’re going to pan fry it using an aggressively high heat; using a high-heat oil (low smoke temperature oil) such as canola or vegetable oil. Usually for red meats, we prefer using butter or peanut oil when searing meat, and we prefer using cast iron pan, but don’t panic if you don’t have this on hand, a good non-stick or ceramic coated pan will work just fine. You will only need to sear this about 1-2 minutes on each side; depending on how big the cubes are. Then remove them from the heat and let them rest while you prepare the rest.
Lamb shanks are cheaper cuts that go even further in regards to dollar ($) per portion. This is a meat that becomes softer and more buttery in texture when slow cooked because of the marbling throughout. You will not need to “pound” this one out, but you will still want to cube it; cutting against the grain, and for added flavor, you can give it a good cold water and sea salt bath. You can “express” this bath, by putting it all into a strong plastic zipper storage bag with the solution, removing as much of the air from it as possible, and then throwing it into the fridge for 10-15 minutes.
2. The next part of this all about the spices! Fresh herbs and spices can be expensive and don’t always have the potency you’re hoping for unless you use larger quantities. And, sometimes it will take more time to process fresh herbs when preparing your meal, so although we advocate for fresh whenever possible, you need to take your time into account, your budgets, and your desire to prepare these ingredients. For the sake of this recipe, ground, dried seasonings will work just fine.
SO! Let’s get started!
Rustic Lamb & Coconut Curried Potato Stew
Winter-inspired stew recipes like Georgie's Rustic Lamb & Coconut Curried Potato Stew are some of the most flavorful, yet cost effective ways to feed many mouths at once. This recipe will feed 6-8. Prep time - 20-40min Cook time - 1hr
- 1 lb lamb pieces
- 2 large golden potato, peeled & cubed
- 1/2 Tsp ground turmeric
- 2 Tsp (pink) sea salt
- 2 large red onions chopped
- 10 cloves of fresh garlic
- 1 Tsp of ground ginger
- 2 pinches of ground coriander
- 1 small red chili
- 1 Tbsp butter (or ghee)
- 1/2 cinnamon stick
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 Tsp fennel seeds
- 1 Tbsp ground cumin
- 1 Tsp ground nutmeg
- 1 Tsp ground allspice
- 1/2 cup coconut milk
- 2 cans crushed tomatoes
- 2 Tbsp fennel seeds
- 1 Tsp black cardamon
- 2 Cups coconut milk
- 2 Cups peeled & thick-cut carrots
Place lamb pieces and potato in a large bowl. Add turmeric and salt. Mix well. Cover and rest in the fridge for 30 minutes.
Place onion, garlic, ginger, coriander and chili pepper in a blender with 1 cup of water. Process until smooth. Set aside.
In a large heavy bottomed saucepan or cast iron casserole, heat butter on high. Add cinnamon, bay leaf, coriander, fennel seeds and black cardamom. Saute for a few seconds. Add the marinated meat and potatoes. Saute for a few minutes, tossing occasionally until meat is sealed on the outside and starting to brown. Add carrots and the onion mixture and reduce heat to medium.
Add cumin, nutmeg, allspice and tomatoes. Season with salt to taste. Cover and simmer on medium for 40 minutes. Reduce heat to low. Add coconut milk. Cover and simmer for a further 15 minutes. Serve hot with a nice salad dressed with rice vinegar & oil.