Lamb Stew with Dried
Fruit, Chestnuts and Pomegranate Syrup
I realize that a cookbook
author shouldn't admit to favorities, but I can't resist this exquisite
lamb dish. The fruit, the chestnuts, the pomegranate syrup -- all join
up with tender lamb to create heaven on a plate! ~ Ann
* 2 yellow onions,
* 5 cloves garlic,
* 3 pounds lamb
stew, cut into 2-inch cubes
* 1 teaspoon
* 1 teaspoon
freshly ground black pepper
teaspoon ground turmeric
* 3 carrots,
peeled and cut in thirds on the diagonal
* 1 leek,
white part only, sliced
* 1 cup beef
stock, or 1 bouillon
cub dissolved in 1 cup water
* 1 cup
dry red wine
* 3 tablespoons
* 2 tablespoons
teaspoon ground cinnamon
teaspoon dried thyme
zest of 1/2 lemon
cup dried apricots
cup prunes, pitted
cup Pomegranate Syrup
* 1 cup chestnuts,
roasted and shelled
the olive oil in a Dutch oven
over medium heat. Add the onions and garlic and saute for 5 minutes.
Increase the heat to high and add the lamb, salt, pepper, and turmeric.
Brown the lamb on all sides.
carrots, leek, stock, wine, tomato paste, vinegar, cinnamon, thyme, and
Bring to a boil, decrease the heat to low; cover, and cook for 45
Add the apricots, prunes, and pomegranate syrup.
Stir well, cover, and cook for 30 minutes longer.
Add the chestnuts, cover, and cook for 15 minutes longer.
lamb should be tender and the vegetables,
soft but not mushy.
4 cups pomegranate juice
When making pomegranate syrup,
you can use
freshly squeezed or store-bought pomegranate juice (buy only pure
juice, without sugar or flavorings added). You will need a large amount
to start with; try it with 4 cups as there is a lot of evaporation in
the cooking process. Depending on how thick you like your syrup, 4 cups
of juice will reduce to yield about 2 cups of syrup.
Pour the juice intoa saucepan
or skillet and
bring to a steady boil over high heat. Decrease the heat to maintain a
steady, low bubbling, and cook, stirring occasionally with a wooden
spoon. After about 20 to 30 minutes the juice will have reduced by
about one-half and will start to thicken.
To test consistency, dip a
spoon in the syrup
-- if it comes out relatively clean, continue cooking. If the spoon is
coated and the syrup takes its time about sliding off, you've done it!
Pour the cooled syrup into a
jar and close
tightly. It will keep in the refrigerator for 6 months. Makes about 2