The picture of this dish says it all. Just looking at it makes me want to run to the butcher shop for some luscious Irish lamb chops! I may be bias, but at this moment I have to announce that there is absolutely no better lamb in the world.
I took a train trip yesterday and while gazing out the window I passed fields and fields of grazing sheep and lambs. They can be seen everywhere munching down on the famously colored green grass of this lovely place.
I grew up eating the best lamb stews in the world and only realized that fact when I moved away and could not find lamb that equalled it anywhere.
The cut of lamb that I prefer for lamb stew is gigot chops, and if you can find them, you are on your way to making something fabulous. You will also need to follow my brilliant recipe (if I do say so myself!)
You will need:
3 tbs extra-virgin or regular olive oil
6 lamb Gigot chops ( a slice of lamb, taken through the leg, so including a small central bone)
coarse sea-salt or kosher salt to season chops (about 2 tsp)
Several grinds of black pepper (optional)
10 small onions, halved
4 medium carrots, cut into thick diagonal slices
4 medium potatoes, washed & quartered
2 parsnips, peeled & thickly sliced
3 or 4 medium potatoes, cut into 4 wedges each
3 sprigs fresh rosemary
2 tbs all-purpose flour
2 tsps coarse sea-salt (I use Maldon sea-salt flakes)
several grinds black pepper (optional)
1 cup white wine
4 cups veggie or chicken broth (or 1 good quality bouillon cube & water)
Preheat oven 450*
1 – Season the chops with salt (and freshly ground pepper if you like), and sear in large saute pan on high heat in olive oil. Make sure to cook in one layer at a time, adding olive oil as you need it. Transfer to plate as you go and set aside.
2 – Turn heat down to medium and add the onions and rosemary and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
3 – Add carrots and parsnips and continue to saute for another 5 or so minutes, letting them take on a little brown color. Add the flour and stir into veggies. Cook for about 1 minute, stirring constantly.
4 – Add the wine and stir to a thick paste, then add the broth (or water & bouillon) and turn heat up to high.
5 – Add the chops in an even layer (meat will certainly overlap slightly) and when liquid comes to a boil, turn heat off. Taste the broth and add some seasoning such as salt and pepper if you think it needs it. Cover with a lid.
6 – Place in preheated oven and cook undisturbed for 1 1/4 hours. Remove from oven and leave to cool down and settle for 10 minutes.
Divide chops between six plates or shallow bowls and top with lots of vegetables and broth. You can also serve with other things such as rice, pasta noodles, bread or some greens (either cooked such as wilted spinach or a salad of field greens)