The title of this blog post says it all. Last night I simply made the best stew I’ve ever concocted. It was not only the best stew I’ve ever made, it was also in the top 10 things I’ve ever eaten. That is how good it was.
It all started on Wednesday night as I was preparing food for one of my small groups. Our theme was biblical food. Not wanting to bring fig newtons or a bowl full of locust, I decided to pan cook some savory lamp chops. Since lamb is so expensive, I cut it into little pieces, off the bone, and served them like appetizers with toothpicks. They were yummy. But, I had these lamb bones left over. What to do?
What to do? Stew!
Here is what I did.
1. I heated my dutch oven with olive oil, sea salt, pepper, rosemary, sweet basil, garlic, cloves, allspice, and let that come to a nice sizzle.
2. To the lamb bones I added more hunks of lamb chomp and a pound and a half of stew meat (beef) and put the same chorus of spices on it.
3. I browned the meat–lamb bones, lamb, and stew meat in the dutch oven and then added four cups of beef broth and three bay leaves. I just used canned broth but homemade would have been better.
4. I brought that to a boil and then I covered it, reduced heat (to about 4 on my stove top knob) and let it simmer for three hours, stirring occasionally.
5. At the end of three hours, I removed the bones and, after letting them cool, I picked the meat off those bones. It was a considerable amount of meat, and it came off very easy. I put the meat back into the dutch oven and fished the bay leaves out.
6. I added 6 potatoes peeled and cut into bite size chunks along with 5 carrots (peeled and diced) and 4 stalks of celery (diced).
7. After adding the veggies, I added enough water to cover them (about 2 cups maybe?) then covered with the lid and cooked for another hour.
8. 10 minutes before serving, I added one bag of frozen peas and carrots. It just wouldn’t be stew without that, now would it?
I served the stew simply with crackers and a loaf of french bread from the Albertsons. The flavor was spectacular. I was a little worried about the mingling of the lamb and beef, but after the four hours in the dutch oven together, they sang with sweet harmony.