Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Navarin of Lamb with mashed sweet potatoes

Hello Dear Reader,

Some of you already know that I'm one of the lucky few who lives close to a really affordable butchers. They are an abbatoir outlet. I buy a lot of something if it's on offer. I had neck of lamb on the bone in the freezer. I did a 'mysupermarket' search and found most of the neck of lamb in the supermarket to be 'neck fillets' which are really expensive. Please save this recipe for when you find neck of lamb on the bone, it's more affordable. If any of you can get to Tregeagles, based at Trago on the out skirts of Liskeard, then they often have all the cheaper cuts of meat. 

 I make my mashed sweet potato by microwaving two large sweet potatoes for six minutes. I wash, dry, prick them with a fork and microwave on full power. I then cut them open and scoop out the softened and cooked potato.

It's a very simple way to mash. I also make ordinary mashed potato this way too in the microwave.I add the tiniest spoon of butter to my sweet potatoes.

I made the Navarin of Lamb in the slow cooker. Neck of lamb really benefits from a long slow and gentle simmer. Plus, it's another excuse not to use my oven. 

To serve 4

1KG of neck of lamb on the bone. In my simple opinion, meat always tastes better cooked on the bone. 
Bay leaves, parsley and thyme. I had the bay leaves and parsley from the garden and used a dried sprig of thyme from my herb pot that I'd kept.
4 large carrots - peeled and chopped.
1/4 head of celery - finely diced
1 large onion - finely diced
1 tin of plum tomatoes
4 crushed garlic cloves
salt and pepper
2 mugs of stock - I used veggie stock cubes - mixed with boiling water.

Here's the simple bit - combine the lot in the slow cooker. Set to low and go to work for the day. I cooked this for twelve hours. 

Remove the bones - you will find that the meat will just slide off the bones. Fish around with a slotted spoon to check if you've left any bones behind. Pick out the greenery and then thicken with some gravy granules.

 I will use what's left, plus some added cooked potatoes to make a pie filling to stretch this even further. I'm doing well at loading my freezer with 'ready meals'. It's lovely to come home, especially on these long dark nights, to something really filling and simple to cook or even just reheat. 

I'm now on the hunt for beef bones and oxtail. Any guesses what I will do with them?

Until tomorrow,

Love Froogs xxxx