I’ve been suffering from serious pans envy recently. This time of year puts me in the mood for hearty, slow cooked dishes that warm you up when it’s cold outside. I have one cast iron le Creuset casserole which I use all the time (as you may well have spotted!) but it’s a shallow pan and while it’s ideal for some things I want a bigger deeper version. We are about to repaint our kitchen in a lovely 50s blue(well, Barry is) and I am already looking at blue le Creuset casseroles and putting one firmly at the top of my Christmas list. (Did I mention Christmas there?? – sorry!!!). One of those casseroles would be ideal for this recipe. It would allow you to brown the meat in the same dish that you put into the oven so you didn’t lose any of the lovely flavour from the bottom of the pot. I don’t have mine (yet!) but I do have a beautiful heart-shaped stoneware casserole which we were lucky enough to get as a wedding present. You can’t use it on the hob but it is a thing of beauty all the same.
Lamb hot pot
- 600g lamb shoulder
- 2 Tablespoons plain flour
- 3 large potatoes – about 600g
- 2 large onions
- 4 medium carrots – about 200g
- 1 big stick of celery – about 100g
- A generous sprig of fresh thyme
- A bay leaf
- 500ml of lamb stock
- Salt and pepper
You will need a deep casserole with a lid.
Preheat the oven to 170.
Toss the lamb in seasoned flour so it is lightly coated. The easiest way to do this is by putting the seasoned flour in a zip lock bag and adding the lamb and jumbling it about.
Heat a tablespoon of oil over a high heat and brown the lamb well then remove from the pan and set aside.
Slice the onions and fry them in the same pan until they are soft and just beginning to brown at the edges.
Slice the carrots thickly and chop the celery roughly.
Place the browned lamb and all the vegetables into your casserole.
Pour the stock in and tuck in the thyme and the bayleaf.
Peel the potatoes and cut them into thick slices.
Layer the potato on top, overlapping the slices.
Dot the potatoes with butter and season with salt and pepper.
Put the lid on and cook in the oven for an hour and ten minutes.
Remove the lid and cook for a further 50 minutes.
Serve with something green. We had sliced greens but cabbage would be good, or peas.