04 June 2014

Jamie Oliver's Lamb Fricassee

I love this dish AND I even stick to the recipe when making it. Shock!

To begin, lots of chopping is needed, but what a perfect way to practice your mindfulness skills while making something delicious for dinner. Once everything’s chopped it’s pretty straightforward cooking for such fabulous rewards.

The fabulous Jamie Oliver does…Spain, Italy,
Morocco, Sweden, Greece and France

  Jamie Oliver writes (or his copy editor does) a lovely introduction to this recipe leaving your mouth watering:

“Many people will find the idea of cooking lettuce in a stew weird, but to be honest, lettuce used to be really commonplace in soups and stews in Britain as well as in Greece. One thing’s for sure, you won’t regret trying this. Halfway through the cooking, the lettuce and dill won’t look their best, but this stage is all about developing bold flavours, richness and making sure the meat melts in your mouth. At the next stage you’ll be doing something to pimp it up so it looks beautiful and slaps you around the face with its flavours: by enriching this fricassee with avgolemono (mixed egg yolks and lemon), and just a touch of Greek yoghurt, you get a thickness and a shine that really bring the flavours together to perfection. Don’t miss giving this one a go.”

I hope you enjoy this dish as much as I do.

Jamie Oliver’s Lamb Fricassee
From his Jamie Does… cook book

Serves 6 

My own delicious lamb fricassee

olive oil
1.2kb boned leg of lamb, trimmed and cut into 4cm pieces
1 medium onion, peeled and finely sliced
4 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely chopped
2 bunches of spring onions, trimmed and finely sliced
2 heads of cos or romaine lettuce, washed and finely shredded (I’ve also used iceberg before with good results)
a bunch of fresh dill, finely chopped (stalks and all)
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
200ml Greek yoghurt

For the avgolemono sauce
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
juice of 1.5 lemons

Heat a few lugs of olive oil over a medium heat in a large saucepan and add the pieces of lamb. Stir and cook for and 5 to 7 minutes, until the lamb is brown all over – you will need to do this in batches. Once done, that the meat out of the pan and add the onion, garlic and spring onions. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions begin to soften, but not colour, then put the meat back into the pan.

Stir in the shredded lettuce and most of the dill and cook for a few more minutes, stirring constantly, until the lettuce has wilted. Add a few good pinches of salt and pepper and just enough water to cover the stew. Bring to the boil, then turn the heat down to a really low simmer, cover with a lid, and let it tick away for 1.5 to 2 hours. After this time remove the lid and cook for a further 30 minutes, or until the lamb is beautifully cooked and pulls apart easily (nine times out of ten the lamb will be perfect after this time, but it does depend on your size of pot and the age of your lamb). Keep an eye on it as it cooks and add a splash of water if it looks like it’s drying out.

When you’re happy with the consistency, make the avgolemono sauce by whisking together the eggs and lemon juice until combined, then stir in a dessertspoon of Greek yoghurt and a splash of water if need be. The yoghurt isn’t traditional, but it adds a nice creaminess Jamie Oliver loves. Your stew should be happily simmering away, so take it off the heat and very gently stir the avgolemono through it. You don’t want to over-stir or the eggs will begin to set. Pop the lid on and leave for a few minutes.

Have a taste and add another pinch of salt and pepper or a squeeze of lemon juice if it needs it. Sprinkle over your reserved dill, then take the pan straight to the table so that everyone can help themselves. Serve with a tomato salad, the rest of the Greek yoghurt for dolloping over, and crusty bread or mash to mop up that delicious meaty sauce.

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