This was the first year that I raised lamb and it has given me a wonderful excuse to experiment in the kitchen. I have been on a kick making Indian food this winter and, in that spirit, last weekend I made naan, saag paneer with home-made paneer and curried lamb. We scooped the curry with naan and eat with our hands – something I always treasure – but you can also serve this with rice and eat it with a fork or spoon!
In a large, heavy bottom pot melt:
1 Tbs. ghee (clarified butter)
Once hot, add:
3 lb. bone in (or 2 lb. boneless) lamb stew meat.
Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Stir every few minutes, allowing the meat to sear and brown before rotating. Then add:
1 Tbs. curry powder
1 tsp. turmeric powder
1 tsp. cumin powder
1 tsp. coriander powder (or whole seeds freshly ground)
1 tsp. thyme leaves (or 4 – 5 springs of fresh thyme)
Once the meat is browned and the spices have released their aroma add:
1 cinnamon stick
4 or 5 star anise pods
3 bay leaves
2 inches of fresh ginger cut into thin slices
2 cups carrots (washed and chopped into 1/2 inch cubes/pieces)
2 cups red potato (washed and cut into 1/2 inch cubes/pieces, I leave the skin on)
1 large onion, chopped
4-6 cloves of garlic, chopped
salt (1 tsp. – 1 Tbs. depending on your liking)
Enough water to just cover (a few veggies can be poking up here and there!)
Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer on low for 60 – 90 minutes. If you want it to be soupy like a stew, keep it covered so that the water does not evaporate off. I prefer to cook mine uncovered, as the water reduces and the potatoes break down the stew gets thick and creamy. This is a good preparation choice for eating with naan or over rice. I made my stew with bone in meat, so we picked up the pieces to eat the meat off the bone, but it was so tender that it could just as well have been picked off with a spoon!