Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Lamb and lentil stew

This is a really tasty stew that you can spice up or down to suit your family. With a little bit of prep during your once a week food preparation, you can have the meat pre-cooked so that the stew itself will take under thirty minutes to put together at meal time. Another way to prepare the meat is to put it in a crock pot early in the morning and cook it on low all day. When you get home and are ready to put the stew together, the meat will be tender and falling apart. Good for this particular stew!

We like curries and spicy food a lot, so I’ve included the spices that we add, but with the optional designation. You could add rosemary or bay leaf if you prefer milder tastes.

Lamb and Lentil Stew

1 lb lamb
1 qt water

Olive oil
2 onions, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, mashed
2 T fresh ginger, grated
1-2 T curry paste, or your favorite mix of Indian spices (optional, my mixture is below)
2 c lentils, pre-soaked if possible
10 oz frozen spinach
28 oz can crushed tomatoes
1 lb carrots, sliced

Pre-cook the lamb in a crock pot with a quart of water. When it’s time to make the stew, add enough water to bring the liquid back up to one quart. Pre-soak the lentils too, 2 c lentils in 4 c water. Drain before using.

In a heavy stockpot, saute the onions, garlic, and ginger in olive oil. Add the curry paste or spice mixture of choice and heat through. Add the stock water from the lamb and the lentils and bring to a boil. Cook until tender, 15 to 20 minutes. [Note - some varieties of lentils cook faster than others.] Add the spinach, tomatoes, carrots and lamb, and cook until carrots are tender, about 10 minutes.

Suggested Spice Mixture (optional)
2 t cumin powder
1/2 t tumeric
1/2 t coriander
Cayenne pepper to taste
Dash of cinnamon

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