This is an easy, hearty and delicious stew for Fall. Chunks of lamb are simmered with chocolate stout, tomatoes, corn and quinoa for an unusual and warming dish.
Here is a lamb stew that makes the transition from Summer to Fall, combining corn, tomatoes and onion with garlic, chocolate stout and stock. This combination suggested southwestern food to me, and so I took that flavoring in that direction. The result was excellent, and quite unlike any stew I've had. The addition of quinoa was an experiment for me, but I think a great success, as it adds body, texture and its own nutty flavor to the stew.
Southwestern Lamb Stew with Stout and Quinoa
3 lb lean lamb stew meat, cut into 1" cubes
2 onions, peeled and cut into 1" chunks
10 plum tomatoes, peeled, seeded, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup black quinoa, well-rinsed if not pre-rinsed, to remove bitter coating
1 cup kernel corn (about 2 ears of corn cut off the cob)
3 T olive oil
1/4 tsp white pepper
1 clove elephant garlic (very large, mild garlic), or 2 cloves regular garlic, peeled and finely chopped
1/2 of a cinnamon stick
1 tsp thyme
1 1/2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp ground chipotle chile pepper
1 large bay leaf
1 1/2 cups strong beef stock
1 large can or bottle of double chocolate stout (about 15 oz)
sea salt and ground black pepper
1/4 cup fresh cilantro for garnish
- In a nonreactive dutch oven, or other large pot, place the lamb, onions, and olive oil. Saute over high heat until browned. Add the garlic and saute two minutes more (do not burn the garlic)
- Add the white pepper, cinnamon stick, thyme, cumin, chipotle, bay leaf, tomatoes, beef stock, and stout.
Cover and cook on a strong simmer over medium heat.
- Cooking the Stew:
- The total cooking time will be about one hour, or until lamb is tender.
- Thirty minutes before the lamb will be done, add the uncooked quinoa. Continue cooking.
- Ten minutes before the lamb will be done, add the kernel corn (the goal is to not over cook the corn).
- Taste and adjust seasoning with the salt and pepper. Serve, garnished with fresh cilantro leaves.