Monthly Archive for March, 2007

The Last Supper – Lamb Stew w/ Spinach Noodles

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My apologies for the scarcity of posts lately. I have been a bit preoccupied since January w/ a major and very important project… remodeling my kitchen!! I didn’t realize how involved this process can be. Meeting w/ the contractor, lining up the financing, picking out fixtures, emptying the cabinets, and dealing w/ the little surprises that inevitably pop up! Getting all these things accomplished during my time off left very little time for blogging.

To say goodbye to my old kitchen I decided to have some friends over for “the last supper”. Lamb stew served over spinach noodles sounded like a good choice for a cold winter evening, so that’s what I prepared.

Lamb Stew w/ Spinach Noodles

Ingredients:

10 cloves garlic  – peeled and crushed (for marinade)

1 ounce dried morel mushrooms

4 tomatoes – 1 inch dice

1 bunch Swiss chard (1/2 pound) – chopped crosswise into 1 inch pieces

10 crimini mushrooms – sliced

3 pounds lamb stew meat (1 inch cubes)

2 mulato chiles – crumbled (for marinade)

1 butternut squash (1 1/2 pounds) – 1/2 inch dice

4 celery stalks (cut into 1/2 inch pieces)

5 carrots (peeled, halved and cut into 1/2 inch pieces)

1 leek (white part only) – 1/2 inch slices

1 bag red pearl onions – peeled (10 ounces)

1 tablespoon cumin (for marinade)

1 bouquet garni (2 sprigs of thyme, 10 black peppercorns, 2 cloves, 2 bay leaves all wrapped in a leek leaf tied w/ twine)

1 cup red wine (I used a nice red from Portugal)

1 tablespoon flour

3 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons butter

2 pounds spinach noodles

salt and pepper to taste

Procedure:

1) Place lamb into 13 x 9 inch glass baking dish w/ garlic, chiles and 2 tablespoons olive oil; sprinkle w/ cumin, mix well then cover w/ plastic wrap and place in fridge for 1 to 2 hours

2) For veggie stock: In an 10 quart pot, pour in 1 tablespoon olive oil then over low heat sweat the carrots, celery, butternut squash, pearl onions, leek and crimini mushrooms for 5 to 7 minutes; add 6 quarts water and bouquet garni then simmer for 45 minutes; skim off foam periodically

3) Rehydrate morels in 1 1/2 cups warm water for half an hour

4) When veggie stock is ready, add tomatoes and morels w/ liquid; continue simmering

5) Remove lamb from fridge, heat a large pan, add the marinated lamb; when lamb is browned use a slotted spoon to place the lamb (w/ the garlic and chiles) into simmering stock

6) Deglaze the lamb pan w/ the red wine and cook until reduced to 1/3 cup; make “red roux” by adding flour to the pan, stirring frequently while roux is cooking (be careful not to burn the roux)

7) Add the roux to the stew pot and continue simmering the stew for 1 hour; add the chard during last 1/2 hour of cooking; salt and pepper to taste

8) Let stew cool, cover and place in fridge

9) The next day, remove stew from fridge 1 hour prior to service and reheat over gentle heat

10) For noodles: Fill a very large pot w/ enough water to cook pasta; bring water to a boil; salt the water well then add the noodles and cook until “al dente”

11) Strain noodles in colander, place in a large serving bowl and melt butter into noodles

12) Place a nice portion of noodles in each plate and ladle stew over the noodles

13) Savor your “last supper” w/ a delicious full bodied red wine (we popped open a bottle of 2003 K Vineyards Cabernet/Syrah blend, The Creator, Walla Walla Valley, Washington, as well as several other bottles of nice wines!!)

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Farewell old kitchen….

Kitchen1_2  Kitchen2

Kitchen3 Kitchen4

Kitchen5 Kitchen6

To the future… and my new kitchen!!!

Until then,

Bruno

** dinner photos courtesy of Michelle