- Lamb Stew with Leeks and Baby Artichokes
- (Spezzatino di Agnello con Porri e Carciofi)
3 and 1/2 lbs boneless lamb shoulder meat, trimmed of excess fat, cut into 2-inch pieces
1 and 1/4 cups chopped fresh Italian parsley
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon finely grated lemon peel
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 large leeks (white and pale green parts only), thinly sliced (about 2 and 1/2 cups)
1 large onion, thinly sliced
3/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1 and 1/2 cups (or more) chicken broth
18 baby artichokes (about 1 and 3/4 lbs)
Place trimmed lamb in large bowl; sprinkle generously with salt and pepper.
Cover and let stand at room temperature 30 minutes.
Combine 1 cup chopped parsley, minced garlic, and grated lemon peel in small bowl.
Reserve remaining 1/4 cup parsley for garnish.
Heat olive oil in heavy large pot over high heat.
Working in batches, add lamb and cook until well browned on all sides, about 7 minutes per batch.
Transfer lamb to medium bowl.
Add leeks and onion to drippings in pot and saute until softened, about 7 minutes.
Add chopped parsley mixture and thyme; stir 30 seconds.
Return lamb and any accumulated juices to pot.
Add 1 and 1/2 cups broth and bring to boil.
Reduce heat to medium-low; cover and simmer until lamb is very tender, about 1 and 1/2 hours.
Fill medium bowl with cold water.
Squeeze juice from lemon half into water; add squeezed lemon half.
Break off tough outer leaves from 1 artichoke where leaves break naturally, stopping when first yellow leaves are reached.
Cut off stem and top 1/2 inch from artichoke, then cut artichoke in half lengthwise and drop into lemon water.
Repeat with remaining artichokes.
Drain artichokes and add to lamb stew.
Bring to a boil.
Reduce heat to medium-low; cover and simmer until artichokes are tender, adding more broth by 1/4 cupfuls if stew is dry, about 25 minutes.
Season stew to taste with salt and pepper.
Transfer to bowl; sprinkle lamb stew with reserved 1/4 cup chopped parsley and serve with risotto alongside. Makes 6 servings.
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