Lamb Stew with Early Spring Vegetables
This garlic-rich sauce is pure heaven for lovers of the edible bulb. To save time, substitute minced jarred garlic; just know it's not as good as spring's fresh, young garlic. Also, Michael prefers grapeseed oil to olive oil because "its high smoke point is excellent for high-heat applications, such as sautéing. The neutral flavor won't compete with other ingredients, and grapeseed oil is lower in saturated fat than any other oil." He recommends plain-flavored Salute Santé Grapeseed Oil, $13 for a 17-ounce can; salutesante.com.
- 1/2 cup grapeseed oil or olive oil
- 3 pounds boneless leg of lamb, cut into 1 1/2 -inch cubes
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 cups dry red wine
- 2 Spanish onions, diced
- 4 celery ribs, diced
- 1 cup garlic, minced
- 6 medium-size new potatoes, cut into eighths
- 3 tablespoons tomato paste
- 4 cups water
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 cups spring vegetables, such as baby carrots, zucchini, and pattypan squash, blanched and halved*
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
- Garnishes: fresh chopped parsley, grated lemon zest
- 1. Heat oil in a large stainless Dutch oven. Coat lamb cubes with salt, pepper, and flour. Brown in hot oil, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes.
- 2. Remove lamb from pan, and drain any excess oil. Add red wine, scraping bottom of pan to loosen up bits of browned meat. Add onion, celery, and garlic; cook, stirring occasionally, 10 to 15 minutes. Add lamb back to pan with vegetables. Add potatoes and next 3 ingredients; stir and bring to a low boil. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer for 45 minutes.
- 3. Add blanched vegetables, thyme, and rosemary; stir and let simmer 30 more minutes. Garnish, if desired.
- *To blanch, plunge vegetables briefly into boiling water, then into cold water to stop the cooking process.
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