My old man’s Irish stew

My old man’s Irish stew

By
From
Ben's Meat Bible
Serves
4-6
Photographer
Benito Martin

I grew up with this dish. My old man is a County Kerry man who was born and raised in Killarney. He would always go on about how good this dish was, how the potatoes in Ireland were better than anywhere in the world and how important they were to the quality of this dish. In this recipe, I use two types of potatoes: a floury one that will break up and thicken the stew, and a waxy one, which holds its shape to add texture. There’s no doubt that this is a nourishing and delicious meal. I wish I had appreciated it more as a kid.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
1kg mutton or lamb neck or shoulder chops
1 tablespoon beef or duck fat or sunflower oil
salt
freshly ground black pepper
2 medium carrots, diced
8 shallots, peeled and cut in half through the root
2 thyme sprigs
4 medium waxy potatoes, peeled and sliced into large cubes
4 floury potatoes, sliced into quarters
1 tablespoon chopped flat-leaf parsley
buttered crusty bread, to serve

Method

  1. Place the mutton or lamb in a large flameproof casserole dish or ovenproof pan and cover with water. Bring to the boil and blanch for 1–2 minutes, then drain and pat dry with paper towel.
  2. Give the casserole dish a quick wipe and add the fat. Place over medium heat. Season the mutton with salt and pepper, then add it to the casserole and lightly brown all over. Remove the mutton and set aside. Add the carrots and shallots and sauté over medium heat for a few minutes, until soft and lightly coloured.
  3. Preheat the oven to 160°C.
  4. Return the mutton to the pan, along with 1 litre water, and bring to a simmer. Stir in the thyme and both kinds of potatoes. Cover with the lid and cook in the oven for 1–1½ hours, until the mutton is tender.
  5. Once cooked, drain the stock from the mutton into a cup or bowl. Tip a cup of ice into the stock so that the fat cools and rises to the top. Skim the fat off and return the stock to the mutton and vegetables. Bring everything to the boil on the stove top, add the chopped parsley, season again if needed, and serve with buttered crusty bread.
Tags:
Ben
O'Donoghue
meat
bbq
carnivore
barbecue
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