What to eat this month

Lamb and roots stew

Serves 4.

What you need

  • 1kg good, fatty, stewing lamb, cut into large chunks
  • 2tbsp flour
  • 4 large carrots, scrubbed and chopped into 2cm cylinders
  • 1 small/medium swede, peeled and chopped to roughly same size as potatoes
  • 2 medium onions, halved and thinly sliced
  • ½ tbsp dark brown sugar
  • 2 bay leaves
  • A good grate of nutmeg
  • 2tbsp malt vinegar
  • 600ml good quality dark ale
  • 2 medium potatoes, scrubbed and cut with skins on to mouth sized pieces
  • Handful of curly parsley, finely chopped
  • 1½ tsp ground, black pepper
  • 1½ tsp flaked sea salt


Roll the lamb pieces in well seasoned flour and fry over a medium heat in the butter until nicely coloured.  Remove the lamb from the casserole. Scatter over the onions; add the carrots and swede, followed by the remaining ingredients, and enough dark ale to just cover the lamb. Put on a tight fitting lid and cook in the oven at 180C for 2 hours or thereabouts until totally tender. 20 minutes before the finish cooking time, add the potato, leaving the lid off for the remaining cooking time.  This will enable the juice to thicken while the potato cooks. Serve with buttered kale with plenty of black pepper. Scatter over with finely chopped parsley.

© Valentine Warner 2010