"The best times you are going to have in life are at the dinner table and in bed." Old Italian saying. So relax, and enjoy the simple things!


Spring Lamb Stew: Foodie Friday

spring lamb stew: simplelivingeating.com

This is the first recipe I am cooking from Dorie Greenspan’s: Around My French Table. I felt the need to adapt the ingredient list to fit more with my commitment to live and eat greener, part of doing this is to eat less meat. 

I have proposed using meat more as a condiment than as a centerpiece for meals. 
You really don’t need much meat in a stew to flavor it, so I decided to reduce the 3 pounds of lamb that is called for in the original recipe down to 1 pound while at the same time doubling the vegetables (a Volumetric's technique).
 As I started to cook the stew I felt the need to use flavor heightening techniques which have served me well in the past for making stews. I ended up rewriting the whole recipe. So the following is my take on Dorie’s fabulous Springtime lamb stew.
One note on lamb. If you never cooked with it. I hadn’t. The myths about it are not true. It is not gamey. The flavor and texture are as if you combine beef and chicken. A lighter less dense version of beef. Very tasty and my children loved it.

Spring Lamb Stew
by Diane Balch
Based on: Navarin Printanier by Dorie Greenspan
Prep: 1 hour serves: 4-6

4 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound boneless lamb shoulder, fat removed and cut into small chunks.
3 tablespoons of flour (can use gluten-free)
1/2 cup dry red wine
3 tablespoons of tomato paste
1 32 oz container of beef broth
3 garlic cloves, minced.
1/2 of fresh parsley leaves chopped.
1 tbsp of dried Thyme
1 bay leaf
2 tablespoons of butter
1 large onion chopped
6 carrots chopped
3 turnips or parsnips chopped
4 large red potatoes or any other type peeled and chopped.
1 cup of frozen peas

1) Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2) In a medium to large size Dutch oven heat 2 tbsp oil on medium high heat.
3) Put about 1 tablespoon of the flour in a flat dish.
4) Salt  and pepper the beef cubes then cover all sides with flour and put them in the Dutch oven to brown. Brown all sides about 4 minutes on each side. Put browned meat aside in a bowl.
5) Pour 1/2 cup of the wine into the Dutch oven and turn the heat up to high. Using a spatula scrape the meat scraps on the bottom of the pan and turn off the heat when the wine begins to thicken. Pour this over the lamb cubes. The browned bits at the bottom of a pan are called “Fond.” The wine is used to “deGlaze” the pan, which basically means to remove the Fond so you can use this very flavorful stuff to make a sauce.
6) Return the Dutch oven to the stove and add 2 tbsp of oil heat on medium high.
7) Add the remaining flour. Move it around in the Dutch  Oven with a spatula until it begins to brown. 
8) Add tomato paste and incorporate it into the flour.
9) Add 1/4 red wine and scrape and incorporate this with the flour tomato paste mixture. 
10) Turn the heat up to high and add the beef broth and the garlic, parsley, thyme and bay leaf. When this is blended and the broth is boiling add the lamb.
11) Reduce the heat to a simmer and cover the pot. Leave it to cook for 45 minutes. Stir occasionally. 
12) While the lamb is simmering put a large sauce pot on the stove and melt 2 tbsp of butter on medium high heat. 
13) As you chop the vegetables put them into the pot and salt them. Start with the onions. Pour sugar over the onions. Let the onions wilt and slightly brown before you add the rest of the vegetables in this order: carrots, parsnips, and finish with the potatoes. Cook until all vegetables start to brown about 10 minutes.
14) Once the lamb has simmered for 45 minutes add the sautéed vegetables to the Dutch oven. Mix the ingredients. Make sure you scrape the bottom of the pan. 
15) Cover the Dutch oven and bake the stew between 30 and 40 minutes or until the lamb is fork tender.
16) When you remove the Dutch oven from the stove mix the frozen peas into the stew. Let them sit for at least 3 minutes before serving the stew.
A side of rustic bread or rolls with butter goes nicely with this dish, along with a large glass of red wine.
copyright 2012

Spotlight Recipes from Last Week's Party:

For Starters: 

From Life is Sweet : Brie Cheese and Cherry Jam Pastry Puffs

I always have leftover puffed pastry. This is a great use for it. This recipe is so versatile you can use whatever cheese, jam, and nuts you have on hand.

First Course:

From Fox in the Kitchen: Thai Red Curry Carrot Soup

I love carrot soup but I have always found the recipes to be very complicated. This one is not, it is filled with flavor from red curry paste and coconut milk. The swirl of sour cream makes for a beautiful presentation and added flavor.

Let's skip to Dessert:

From Miz Helen's Country Cottage: Aunt Bluette's Spicy Peach Shortcake

Nothing says Springtime and warm weather is here than peaches! I love that this shortcake was inspired by a character in novel... I wish I could have summited a recipe in school instead of a term paper. Miz Helen has put a twist on a classic recipe by adding some spice... definitely a satisfy dessert.

Instructions for Foodie Friday linky:


1) Copy the Foodie Friday Button's html from this website's sidebar.

2) Paste this html to the html page of the recipe you want to link to Foodie Friday. You can also make a word link or post our button on your sidebar. Please link back.
3) Copy the link to the recipes you want to add to Foodie Friday, not your homepage. You can post up to 3 recipes that you have not shared before.

4) Click on "your next" on this page.

5) Past your link and type in the name of the recipe, not your name.

6) Choose how you want to download the photo.

lambspring vegetableslamb stewFrench home cookingDorie GreenspanAround my French Table 

Related articles
Mediterranean Lamb Stew with Jerusulum Artichokes (kathskitchensync.wordpress.com)
Lamb Stew with Spring Veggies (stevesacooking.com)
Foodie Friday Linky: Half Crocked Beef Stew (simplelivingdianebalch.blogspot.com)

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  1. Happy Foodie Friday, Diane! Looks like I'm the first one at the party this week. That's actually a first for me! LOL

    We love lamb and prepare it in many ways. We roast it, braise it, grill it and use it in soups and stews. We're very lucky to have some amazing local farms that sell humanely and organically raised beef, poultrey, lamb and pork, so we buy from them as often as we can. It can be a little pricier, but the difference in the flavor and quality is tremendous and so worth it. Your version of Dorie's recipe sounds and looks absolutely delicious! I'll be putting it in my recipe files.

    Thanks for hosting the party this week. I hope you have a wonderful weekend! ~Mary

    1. I'm having a slow start today myself. My mother will be so excited to see your recipe correctly called gravy not sauce. I grew up with a pot of this cooking on the stove every Sunday. My mom scolds me all the time because I don't make my own gravy. I love this recipe it is really classic. I will pin it on my Italian American board. Thanks.

  2. Yummy, lamb stew. That sounds So good! Thanks for hosting!

    1. You are very welcome. Thanks for stopping by.

  3. Hi Diane - thanks so much for inviting me to join your linky party. You have a great blog - gonna peruse for a while :). I hope you have a great weekend.

    1. I'm really happy I discovered your blog too. Thanks for coming by.

  4. Hi Diane, Your lamb stew looks wonderful. My kids love lamb, and combined with parsnips - I think this would be a winner. I shared my Herbed Chicken & Artichokes with Coconut Scented Forbidden Rice today. Thanks for the invite! Have a wonderful day!

    1. I love your recipe too... The flavor in this stew is awesome enjoy.

  5. Thanks for the invitation! That stew looks delicious. Can't wait to see other Mediterranean diet recipes this month - a great month to start eating that way with the weather getting warmer.

    1. Check out the Oldways site too for a lot of great Mediterranean recipes too. If you look in my back posts you'll see a lot of my family's Italian recipes that I think you'll enjoy.

  6. Thanks for noticing my salad and inviting me to link up...now I have a new site to follow!

    1. I'm so glad I did. Hope to see you next week.

  7. Hi Diane - I linked up to last week's party by mistake. Oops. I deleted the two recipes and linked them up to this week's Foodie Friday. Thanks again for the invite!

    1. Btw - Love the Spring Lamb Stew recipe! Pinning it and plan on making it soon!

  8. What great features and a beautiful stew:) Have a great weekend

    1. Thanks for stopping by did you make the flounder yet?

  9. I really like the idea of less meat is this stew. Great idea! Nothing lacking in the flavor, either.

    1. I've been cutting the meat in half in almost all of my recipes and no one is complaining in my family. We are eating healthier and saving money too.

  10. Hi Diane!! Thanks for the invire to your linky party!! I am sharing the Scallops and Veggie Stir Fry recipe! It's so good, I hope you give it a go!!


    1. I will definitely, my family loves scallops and I think they are the easiest fish to cook. Dry them off, hot pan, and don't move them!!! See you next week.

  11. Thank you so much for hosting and for inviting me!

  12. Thanks for the invite to join your linky party. I am sharing Tortellini Salad with Toasted Garlic Vinaigrette.

    1. Love it sooo Mediterranean. You should check out the Oldways site click on the top banner. I bet they have some recipes you'll like.

  13. This is a beautiful stew. while I cooked with lamb, I've never used it for stew. Loving the featured brie & cherry jam pastries.

    Thank you for hosting. I did the predictable Cinco de Mayo thing this week, but it was so good--Bacon & Tomato Guacamole.

    1. You can't go wrong with bacon. If you have had lamb before you are really going to love it in a stew. Thanks for coming by see you next week.

  14. Thanks so much for featuring my Brie and Cherry Jam Pastry Puffs this week!! Have a great weekend!! :)

    1. You are very welcome.. I hope you would agree that you really could use a lot of different ingredients for this... it is such a great concept.

  15. Thanks for inviting me to your link-up. So many yummy things to try!

  16. Thank you.for featuring my Thai Red Curry Carrot Soup!

    This week I'm sharing recipes for Chickpea and Grape Tomato Soup and a gluten free Lemon Poppy Seed Angel Food Cake.


  17. Hi Diane, thanks for hosting. Not sure how your blog disappeared from my feed so I'm sorry I missed last week's party. Have a great week. Thanks so much for linking up at my Thriving on Thursday party.

    Anne xx

    1. You are very welcome.. glad you made it this week.

  18. Diane,

    The Lamb Stew looks Amazing and tasty! Thanks for hosting. Have a great week.

  19. Happy Foodie Friday! Glad to read all the sharing post. Making me even more hungry each time. haha....
    Hope you're having a great week ahead, dear.

    1. Always so glad that you've made it by for a visit.

  20. This looks great. We don't eat a lot of lamb, but I think this soup looks tasty. Thanks for sharing at Must Try Monday!

  21. This looks wonderful! Thanks so much for sharing at Mix it up Monday :)

  22. Diane,

    Thanks for linking up this amazing looking stew to Creative Thursday this week. I will definitely give this a try. I love stew.

  23. Hope you have a Very Special Week End and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

  24. I have never cooked with lamb, I would like to give it a go however. This looks fantastic! Thanks for sharing with us at Link It Up Thursday.

  25. nice idea.. thanks for sharing.


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