This "Irish" stew is sneakily similar to your basic pot roast, but for some reason I thought it tasted better (maybe because it has "Irish" in the name). The recipe calls for lamb, but being as lamb can be a bit difficult to find, I used beef (I believe it was a chuck roast) instead. It's also supposed to be made in a large casserole dish (or dutch oven!), but I'm sure you could use a crock pot instead (though I can't give you any good suggestions for cook time...4-6 hours on low?). And finally, as you can see in the picture, I served my stew on a plate. Kind of strange, I know. The stew creates enough juice that you could and might want to use bowls, but it's definitely a thick, casserole-type stew. Regardless of which way you decide to make/serve this goodness, when you walk in the door to the heavenly aroma of meat and thyme and potatoes...you'll just melt.
Recipe slightly adapted from The Illustrated Kitchen Bible
Pictures by Kelly
3 large baking potatoes, peeled and thickly sliced (about 1/4 inch)
2 pounds boneless lamb shoulder, cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces (or beef chuck)
2 onions, sliced
3 large carrots, thickly sliced
salt and pepper, to taste*
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1 bay leaf
2 1/2 cups beef or vegetable stock
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Beginning and ending with potatoes, layer the lamb, onions, and carrots in a large, heavy casserole, seasoning each layer with salt and pepper and part of the thyme. Tuck the bay leaf just under the top layer. Add the stock and cover.
- Bake for 1 hour. Uncover and bake 30 more minutes, until the potatoes and browned and the meat is very tender.** Serve hot.
**If you use a crockpot, you'll have to skip this layer, which is a shame, because slightly browned potatoes are oh so delicious.