Stir-fried lamb makes great base for hearty stews

features@beaufortgazette.comNovember 5, 2013 

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Stir-frying involves cooking food quickly in oil, typically in a wok. Meat and vegetables are typically cut or chopped into very thin, small pieces and then fried over high heat, stirring frequently.

According to the Better Homes and Gardens "More from Your Wok" cookbook, because the food cooks so quickly, its flavor, nutritional value and color is preserved.

Lamb is a tender meat with a strong flavor that is good in many stir-fry dishes. In the following recipes, it is stir-fried first before other techniques are used.

Lamb-Eggplant Stew

1 pound boneless lamb

1 large eggplant, peeled

2 tablespoons cooking oil

1 medium onion, chopped

1 clove garlic, minced

1 16-ounce can tomatoes, cut up

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon dried basil, crushed

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Cut lamb and eggplant into 1/2-inch cubes. Heat pan over high heat; add oil. Stir fry half the lamb in hot oil till browned. Remove from pan. Repeat with remaining lamb. Stir-fry onion and garlic. Return lamb to pan, stir in undrained tomatoes, salt, basil and pepper. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Add cubed eggplant; cover and simmer for 20 more minutes or until eggplant and lamb are done.

Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Makes 4 servings.

Source: Pictorial Review Cook Book

Lamb-Lentil Stew

2 tablespoons cooking oil

1 pound boneless lamb, cut into 1-inch pieces

4 cups beef broth

1 large onion, chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 bay leaves

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1 teaspoon dried oregano, crushed

1/4 teaspoon salt

Dash of pepper

1 cup dried lentils

2 stalks celery, sliced

2 medium carrots, cut into 1-inch pieces

Heat pan over high heat; add oil. Stir-fry half the lamb in the hot oil till browned; remove. Repeat with remaining lamb. Drain excess fat from pan. Return all meat to pan; stir in beef broth, onion, garlic, bay leaves, tomato paste, oregano, salt and pepper. Bring to boiling; reduce heat and cover, simmer for 30 minutes. Rinse lentils; add to lamb mixture. Stir in celery and carrots. Cover and simmer about 45 minutes more or until lamb and vegetables are done. Remove bay leaves. Makes 6 servings.

Source: Pictorial Review Cook Book

Rosemary Lamb Chops

2 tablespoons cooking oil

4 lamb shoulder chops, cut 3/4-inch thick (about 1 1/2 pounds total)

1 medium onion, sliced

1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1/2 cup rose wine or beef broth

Heat pan over medium-high heat; add oil. Brown lamb chops on both sides in hot oil; remove from pan. Add onion, mushrooms, salt, rosemary, and pepper to pan. Stir-fry over high heat for 5 minutes. Return chops to pan; pour wine or broth over all. Reduce heat; cover and simmer about 20 minutes or till chops are tender. Arrange chops on serving platter; keep warm. Boil cooking liquid, uncovered, 3 to 4 minutes or till slightly thickened; spoon over chops. Makes 4 servings.

Pictorial Review Cook Book

Columnist Ervena Faulkner is a Port Royal resident and a retired educator who has always had an interest in food and nutrition. Email her at features@beaufortgazette.com.

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