TOTAL TIME: 2 hours
MAKES: 4 servings
"Warm soups and stews are my soul food as soon as the temperatures drop and winter is on its way. And when the recipe is inspired from your mom’s repertoire of recipes, it reminisces of a childhood of love, warmth and nourishment, setting the feel for the holidays. And I couldn’t think of a better way to start my journey than by celebrating one of my mamma Julia’s recipes. So enjoy making this soulful dish for your family this holiday season."
Green curry paste
- 2 handfuls of fresh cilantro (stems & leaves included-there is tons of flavor in the stems)
- 1-3 fresh green chilies (depending on your spice preference)
- 3-4 cloves of garlic
- 1-inch piece of ginger
- 1 tsp. of black peppercorns
- 4-5 cloves
- 2 pcs. of 1 inch cinnamon sticks
- 1 tsp. cumin seeds
- 2 tsp. of lemon juice
- ½ tsp of fine sea salt
Grind all of the above ingredients with some water into a chutney like consistency and set it aside. This can also be done a day prior and refrigerated until use. It keeps for at least 2 weeks in the freezer and can be used for several meat and bean/ lentil dishes.
- 1 small onion finely chopped
- 1 lb. grass fed lamb salted for at least 40 mins. or overnight (I used some Australian lamb that I salted with about 1 tsp. of salt) . I always prefer some bone in, as it enriches the flavor of the stock. Get your butcher to chop it up into stew sized pieces for you.
- 4 cloves of garlic, crushed
- 1 inch piece of ginger crushed
- 1 tbsp. of extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tsp. of fine sea salt
- 1 tsp. of lemon juice
TIP: If you like a thicker stew, toss the lamb in some flour (regular or gluten- free) before you begin the cooking process.
For the Stew base:
- 1 medium onion finely chopped
- 1 small cauliflower
- 1 large potato
- 2 carrots cut into sticks or discs
- 1 cup of frozen green peas
- 1 celery stalk
- 1 tbsp. of extra virgin olive oil
- Few springs of fresh rosemary and thyme
- In a pressure cooker, on medium heat, sauté the finely chopped onions in a tbsp. of extra virgin olive oil till lightly brown.
- Now add the lamb and the crushed ginger garlic and let it all sauté with the onions.
- Once the meat looks like it’s sealed in, meaning no more red spots are seen, add about two cups of water and a tsp. of salt and bring to a boil.
- Now cover up the pressure cooker and let it whistle for at least 4-5 whistles on medium heat. This will provide the flavored broth for the stew.
- While the meat is cooking, in a separate pot or even a slower cooker, heat some extra virgin olive oil and start with sautéing your chopped onions and celery.
- Now add in about 2 tbsp. of the green curry paste that we had ground up and allow it to fry with the onions for about 2 mins.
- Gradually add in your veggies in the order of the ones that take the most time to cook. So potatoes followed by carrots and then your cauliflower and peas. Add about ½ tsp. of salt. Let the veggies cook until almost half done.
- Now add in your pressure cooked meat and broth (depending on the consistency you desire.) Allow to simmer for another 20- 30 mins on slow heat.
- Add the fresh sprigs of rosemary and thyme towards the last few mins of cooking, as we want only a slight hint of the flavor and smell to complement our Herb and cheese biscuits.
Serve warm with rice, sourdough bread or biscuits. For the herb and cheese biscuit recipe follow this link. GLUTEN FREE HERB & PARMESAN BISCUITS
In the stew recipe above I have kept the lamb meat proportion slightly lower or almost equal to the veggies so that its components and flavors are balanced. Also preparing fresh stock ensures you get added benefit of bone minerals in your stew. To name a few, bone and joint health, gut health, maintaining healthy skin and supporting the immune system.
A stew is a warm comforting meal that nourishes more than just our bodies; it comforts our minds and souls and thus satiates us holistically.
A stew can be simply put together by using up leftover vegetables, beans and meat, thus making it an amazing dish to minimize food waste, a serious problem in our times, while maximizing our $$$.