Lamb Shoulder Braised with Spring Vegetables and Wine
This recipe from Dinners at the Farm in Connecticut combines spring produce with lamb, a meat typically associated with the season. You may need to call ahead to order lamb shoulder from your regular butcher. Look for a producer of grass-fed lamb in your area.
1 1/2 tablespoons butter
4 cups chopped onion (about 1 pound)
6 garlic cloves, crushed
2 pounds lamb shoulder, trimmed and cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
3 cups fruity white wine (such as riesling)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
1/2 pound small red potatoes, halved
1/2 pound turnips, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
1/2 pound carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
1/2 pound asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
1. Melt butter in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion to pan; sauté 4 minutes. Add garlic; sauté 1 minute. Spoon onion mixture into a large bowl. Add half of lamb to pan; sauté 4 minutes or until browned. Remove from pan; add to onion mixture. Repeat procedure with remaining lamb.
2. Add wine to pan, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Return lamb mixture to pan; add salt and pepper. Combine oregano, parsley, and rosemary. Add half of herb mixture to pan; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 1 1/2 hours or until lamb is tender. Add potatoes, turnips, and carrots to pan. Cover and cook 40 minutes or until tender. Add asparagus; cook 5 minutes or until asparagus is tender. Stir in remaining herb mixture.
Wine note: This succulent lamb shoulder surrounded by roasted root vegetables is fantastic with an earthy pinot noir. Try one that's rich and full bodied to mirror the richness of the lamb. Talley Pinot Noir 2006 from California's Arroyo Grande Valley ($36) is sensational. —Karen MacNeil
Yield: 8 servings (serving size: 1 1/4 cups)
CALORIES 325 ; FAT 12.6g (sat 5.3g,mono 4.7g,poly 1.1g); CHOLESTEROL 110mg; CALCIUM 75mg; CARBOHYDRATE 17.2g; SODIUM 448mg; PROTEIN 34.3g; FIBER 3.6g; IRON 4.2mg