For you lamb lovers out there! Sunday's I like to make a comfort meal, but without too much fuss and muss! Last Sunday, at the suggestion of my butcher, who processes all of our meats, I made a fillet of leg of lamb on the bbq. To go with it, earlier in the day, I made a Pineapple Mint Salsa and a Roasted Spring Vegetable with Arugula Pesto! The meal was a hit and quite delicious, everything went together well. If anyone wants the exact recipe, message me and I will post. However, as I mentioned in my first blog last week,, we don't like waste around the farm. Whether it be food, or for instance any materials we use in our daily farming practices. In our leftover food, we try to find uses for it in in our menu plan for that week. I actually plan our meals around leftovers if I have them and plan accordingly. It saves $ and is respectful to the animal to consume as much of it as possible. The scraps of fruit/veggie peelings, bread scraps etc...we save in a composting bin in our kitchen and when it get's full, Jay brings it out to the hogs, about once a day. No meat products, just egg shells,fruits/veggies and bread scraps in the bin. In other instances, Jay will save bailing twine to make emergency repairs to fencing etc...So, we had the leg of lamb dinner, and we had leftover lamb meat. I am sharing with you, how to make a second meal out of the leftovers, buy making lamb stew~here's what I did.
I cut as much leftover meat off the leg of lamb and set aside. I sauteed a mirepoux mixture, (chopped onion,celery and carrots) in a little olive oil, salt and pepper, until they were soft, and starting to brown, added some sliced mushrooms that I needed to cook up before they went bad, to the mixture and cooked a few more minutes. I removed the mixture to a bowl and set aside. I supplemented the leftover lamb meat with some lamb stew meat. I sauteed the uncooked stew meat in the olive oil and scraps of veggies left in the braising pot. Sear the lamb stew meat on med/high heat until rare, but the outside browns nicely. I sprinkled the seared lamb with about 3 Tbsp.of flour, and cook a few more min.stirring until the raw taste of the flour cooks off a bit. I added the leg of lamb leftover meat to the pan, the sauteed lamb stew meat, and added the cooked vegetables and mushrooms back in. I had a 1/2 bag of frozen peas in the freezer and about 1/4-1/3 bag of frozen green beans, I dumped those in. I had a half bottle of red wine in the fridge, that I poured in to braise the meat in and scraped off all the good bits off the bottom of the pan, stirring for a few minutes while the wine thickens from the flour added to the meat. I let that cook on the stove top for a few minutes before adding about 3 Tbsp.of tomato paste, stirred that in to disolve and then added a 32 oz. box of beef stock...this covered all the meat and vegetables well and thinned out the mixture nice. I then added a handful of oranges slices that I had, from my lunch the previous day. Tip: #1) If I open a bottle of red wine, and the bottle is not consumed fully, (horror), I will refrigerate it to use in cooking later. That way it does not get all vinegarish (is that a word)? Nice for stews, etc...tip #2) If I have them, I will sometimes throw in oranges in stews, and roasts etc..adds a really nice flavor! tip #3) when opening a can of tomato paste, and only using a bit, I put it in a plastic ziploc baggie and throw it in the freezer. When I want to use more of it I open the other end of the can, push it out as far as I want, slice off more and back in the freezer for later, if you aren't using it up). Back to the meal...I then add in the previously sauteed vegetables and mushroom mixture, add a rosemary sprig or two or three and pop it in the oven (or put it on the bbq if the house is too hot already).Bake or bbq at 350 degrees. I made some roasted/seasoned new potatoes to go with it. We have had numerous meals out of it. Dinner the first night and lunches until it was gone thereafter. Don't get all wound up on measuring...use what you need to cook up before spoiling, play with it, there is no exact recipe...clean out your refrigerator and freezer and use up what you have! I even pour in some coffee (if Jay hasn't drank the entire pot of coffee from that morning, into my stews and roasts)! ....This is a good example of Farming,Food and Frugality! Enjoy!