This delicious Irish Lamb stew is more of a layered casserole. Lamb, onions...and potatoes, of course!
Preheat oven to 350. Trim any fat off meat. Slice 2 of the potatoes, and all the onions, thinly. In an ovenproof casserole, layer the 2 sliced potatoes, top with only 1/2 the sliced onion, then the lamb. Season with 1/2 the salt, pepper and thyme. Add remaining onion and whole potatoes. Season with remaining spices. Add 2 cups water and cover casserole tightly.
Bake for 2 1/2 hours, or till meat is tender. Garnish with chopped parsley before serving. Serve with thickly buttered Brown Soda Bread.
Tips & Glossary
A special note about these recipes: they came from my friend Nan who lived in Ireland for several years. She married an Irishman, and the two returned to the US with their then-young family. These recipes are some of the family standbys. Nan is both a discerning reader and a wonderful cook.
Irish cooking is quite familiar to many Americans, and so you won't find surprises in the ingredient or spice lists. You probably have much of what's called for in your pantry—or else it's readily available in any grocery store.
Root vegetables are a staple of the Irish: potatoes, carrots, and parsnips are particular favorites. In Ireland, vegetables are served simply, but with lots of butter.
Meats are subjected to the slow-cook method. That's because, historically, the Irish used less-expensive, tougher cuts of meat. Our Irish Lamb Stew, for instance, actually calls for meat from the lamb's neck, not exactly the most tender cut of meat.
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