Many of you would not put Easter, Springtime and slowly, braised lamb stew, in the same sentence. This would be a wintertime all-in-one meal at my house. Perhaps, first snowstorm, crockpot and slowly, braised lamb stew fits better.
Not this week.
According to Ms. Greenspan, our leader and author of Around My French Table, this week’s recipe is a classic and a staple of the Easter season in France. The lamb is meant to be paired with freshly dug spring vegetables, tiny onions, carrots, turnips, potatoes and peas. I was able to buy all the vegetables but the peas at our local Farmer’s Market. (I used frozen peas.)
I cut a three-pound boneless lamb shoulder into 1 1/2-inch cubes. Be sure to remove the excess fatty pieces. The cooking method is a classic braise, perfect for my 7 1/4 quart Creuset cast-iron dutch oven. Brown the meat. Add broth and other seasonings. Simmer.
Next, prepare the veggies and brown in butter for ten minutes. After the meat has simmered for 45 minutes, add the vegetables. A caution, the peas stand alone, unable to play with others until the last moment.
While the stew simmered and still having 1 pound of fresh carrots left, I decided to make Dorie’s café-style grated carrot salad (p. 107). Carottes râpées is also a French classic and served everywhere, from the toniest restaurant to the cheapest student café. Buy it at any take-out place or local grocery store. It’s arguably the favored raw salad of France.
For dessert, I baked Brown Sugar Bundt Cake, a recipe from her Baking: From My Home to Yours. This is a versatile cake, not choosy when it is served, and is perfect for breakfast, brunch, lunch, dinner or bedtime snack. The leftover cake made its way through the neighborhood to very good reviews. Find this recipe here and here.
It’s Springtime. The farmer’s fresh vegetables made this all-in-one-meal quite special and tasty. A winter dish? Wasn’t mentioned. I heard no complaints.
To see how others fared this week, please go to http://www.frenchfridayswithdorie.com/