Holy cow, this was sooooo good. As I started cooking it, I was actually a little worried that the dish would be a bit too rich and pungent, even for a lamb lover like me. I was really glad I'd used two small lamb shanks and 4 lamb loins on the bones for this dish. I will make a note never to use smaller cuts of meat forthis dish as even the lamb loins broke into tiny morsels with the long cooking time.
First off, I must thank Oslo Foodie for posting this recipe on her blog. It is absolutely delish, even if it takes about two days to cook. But if you use a slow cooker like me, this works out well.
Here's how I did it ...
I bought the lamb last night and placed everything in the crock pot to cook overnight. This morning, when I stumbled off to work, I switched it off and just draped a tea towel over it to retain as much of the heat as possible. Even though I only got back at 9.15pm tonight, the dish held well. I heated it up slowly and started making the mash potatoes to go with it.
30 minutes later, I was stuffing my face and singing Lambchops a la Sherry Lewis. J, if you are reading this, I blame you.
Here's Oslo Foodie's recipe which I stayed fairly true to - a rare occurence for me.
1kg of lamb, preferably on the bone and quite chunky - I like it chunky
4 tsp salt
2 tsp of black peppercorns - OK, I lie. I must have added like 3 or maybe even four. Hey, I'm Eurasian, gimme a break!
800ml boiling water
1.5 kg cabbage, wedged - make some chunky and some smaller so you get different textures
1. Place your lamb and cabbage in a fairly deep crock pot
2. Sprinkle the salt and peppercorns on top
3. Pour the boiling water over the lot
4. Cook it on high for about 20 mins till it begins to simmer
5. Turn down the heat
6. Say your prayers and go to bed
7. Wake up, check that a fire has not broken out during the night as your farikal was cooking
8. Turn off the heat and go to work, school, party, doghouse ... whatever
9. Come back home and turn the crock pot back on high
10. Make your mash potatoes ... look you have time so make it from scratch, ye lazy git
11. By the time you've made your mash potatoes, the farikal should be simmering merrily away
12. Eat the lot, fast 'cos cold lamb tastes awful .. unless you're pissed and just back from the pubs
I must say, I was feeling rather poorly the last few weeks trying to kick this gastrointestinal flu. Everything I've eaten has not fully agreed with me as well as this dish. Talk about comfort dish. It made me think of warm, woolly blankie; soft, sun-warmed cotton on cheeks; warm spring water trickling along your limbs ... everything comforting and warm. I felt so much better after eating it, I was thinking of bottling the whole thing as a cure-all.
Better still, I paired it with mashed potatoes - only my favouritest comfort food in the whole wide world. A friend used to kid me that I must have part Irish in me because of my love of potatoes. I would cheekily retort that I have only ever had one Irish boyfriend ... I know ... TMI. Eeeuuuwww, sorry.
Mash potatoes are so easy to make, I can never understand why peeps would buy those instant stuff. The fresh made ones are so phenomenal that it truly baffles me.
Mash Potatoes (You Should Be Ashamed You're Making Me Give You This Recipe)
About 5 potatoes, peeled and halved if small or quartered is large
Ground black pepper
A knob of butter
A dollop of milk
1. Boil the potatoes in the pot of water, making sure to cover them with enough water
2. Keep boiling till the potatoes break up easily when you poke a fork into them
3. Drain the potatoes of water
4. Add the butter and start mashing with a fork. OK, if you are wimpy, using a masher
5. Add salt & pepper and season to taste
6. Add the milk slowly so you can control how creamy or soft you want your mash potatoes
7. Eat the billowy, golden mounds of joy with your farikal or any stew
I was so happy after this meal, I was skipping along ... well, as well as I could considering I was bloody full after pigging out. The creamy, luscious mash potatoes melting right alongside the melt-in-the-mouth lamb and sensually soft cabbage is ambrosia enough to make you weak in the knees. Except this dish is so hearty that you might be able to lift Norwegian woods after this.
On the taste scale, this is near perfect. I give it a 9.25/10. Healthwise, normally lamb would not score that highly being a fairly fatty meat, but the boudacious amount of cabbage makes it a healthy dish. Also, do not forget there is no oil added at all in this dish. Just so you know, cabbage is an incredible vegetable. It not only helps you lose weight, which is why it features so prominently in the infamous Soup Diet or "American Heart Association Diet" (or so I've heard - sic) but it is also good for settling a nervous stomach. Mine has been so nervous it's been seeing a therapist so this dish was a God sent. Therefore I give it a respectable 7.75/10.
I am a happy camper. Lamb chops lalalalala ... off to my sock drawer now ...
Categories - In Hot Soup, Meat Me For Dinner