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Thursday 31 March 2016

Lamb and Red Wine Casserole Recipe : Plus More About Lamb

I recently read that "The UK is the world’s third largest lamb exporter – after Australia and New Zealand – with just over a third of the market", and that "Farmers have called on retailers to do more to support the British lamb industry, with only one major supermarket chain selling entirely UK-grown lamb for Easter." 

Lamb is a popular meat and can be enjoyed cooked as Roasts, Grills, casseroles ... and more! So wherever you may buy your lamb, whether it be home grown or imported I hope you may enjoy this 'Rich Lamb and Red Wine Casserole' recipe suggestion.    

Serves Six (amend recipe to suit)
2 lbs Lamb leg meat
2 tbsp oil
12 shallots
2 cloves garlic
4 rashers rindless bacon
1 cube lamb stock
250 millilitres red wine
2 tbsp tomato puree
2 tsp fresh thyme leaves
1 bay leaf
350 grams button mushrooms
1 tbsp cornflower
freshly ground black pepper

Method and Preparation:
1. Preheat the oven to 190C/Gas 5.

2. Season the lamb with ground black pepper. Heat 1tbsp of the oil in a large frying pan and fry the meat in three batches until well browned, turning frequently, adding a little more oil if necessary. Transfer the lamb to a large flame proof casserole and set aside.

3. Heat the remaining oil in the frying pan and cook the shallots and garlic for 4-5 minutes until lightly browned. Put on a plate and set aside.

4. Add the bacon to the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes until crisp. Add the mixture to the lamb.

5. Dissolve the stock cube in 400ml/14floz boiling water and pour over the lamb. Add the red wine, tomato puree, thyme and bay leaf. Bring to the boil, then cover and transfer to the oven. Cook for 1 hour.

6. Remove casserole from the oven and stir in the shallots, garlic, mushrooms and cornflour paste. Return to the oven for a further 30 minutes until the lamb is tender. Season to taste and serve with a selection of vegetables. 

Tip - Use a leg of lamb, either remove the meat from the bone yourself or ask your butcher to do it, or use diced lamb as purchased from the butcher or supermarket, thawed if frozen.

Original recipe from here

lay the table and enjoy some great food

More about Lamb:

Any sheep that is less than a year old is classified as lamb. The red meat is lean and mild. Lamb is more popular than beef in many parts of the world. As a crown roast (circular racks) or “guard of honor” (two rib racks crossed), it is one of the most elegant presentations anyone can prepare.


• The typical cuts of lamb seen in grocery stores are from a lamb between the ages of five months and one year. Specialty markets may carry whole “hothouse” or baby lamb and Spring (Easter) lamb. Some ethnic recipes will include “mutton” or “yearling,” which should not be referred to as lamb. They are older and stronger in both texture and taste.

• Cuts from the rib section will be expensive. They are tender and juicy and include “rack of lamb,” “crown roast,” and chops.

• Loin cuts are also superior in tenderness and flavor and even pricier than rib meats. These include roasts, the saddle, tenderloins and chops.

• Shoulder meat tends to be less tender and more bony than leg sections and cost the least.

• Only the back legs are processed for commercial sale.

• Ground lamb is the main ingredient in moussaka, a traditional Mediterranean dish.

• Lamb is graded in a manner similar to beef: prime, choice, and good (along with “utility” and “cull”). Choice and Prime are the most commonly available. The numbering system – one-five – refers to the meat to fat ratio per animal.

Buying Tips

• Stew meat can be purchased in chunks, or larger sections, which can be cubed at home. These should be from the less expensive parts of lamb.

• For sautes, choose medallions or chops that are no thicker than one inch. Cook dry for a perfect sear.

• If packaged, be sure that there is little or no liquid inside. Meat should not be shiny, but may have a membrane called the “fell” adhering to part of the surface.

• Calculate about one pound per person when buying a leg roast. Reduce to one-half pound per person if the cut is boneless. A rack of about eight ribs will typically serve two-three people.

Storage Tips

• Do not use any lamb beyond the “sell by” date if it has not been frozen.

• Chops and small portions should be refrigerated and used with two-three days. Keep in freezer for about four months.

• Large cuts will last up to five days if kept cold and tightly wrapped. Freeze for about eight months.

• Do not leave fresh meat un-refrigerated for more than hour.

These 'more about lamb' facts and further links can be found here

All the best Jan


PerthDailyPhoto said...

I am glad that I found your blog Jan, so many divine recipes to try.. and I do :) merci beaucoup!

Louise said...

Hi Jan

Thanks for your comment - I'm glad you are enjoying my blog! I don't feel it's really 'normal service' on my blog at the moment as I'm trying to run my main blog and also my 365 Days Wild blog too (just until June on that one) and I've been so busy I've not managed to get our for any walks or days out which is what I'd usually write about on my main blog!

I'm hoping life will settle into a normal routine again in the summer and my blogging will (in theory) get back to normal once the wild year is over, but I'm glad you're enjoying it anyway.

Thanks for reading!


Lowcarb team member said...

Hi Grace
Glad that you like the recipes.
Glad that you try them too.

Many thanks for your comment, enjoy your day.

All the best Jan

Lowcarb team member said...

Hello Louise
Life does get super busy at times - you must just concentrate on the most important of things - which I'm sure you do!
I do enjoy your posts and your photo's too ...

Hope you have a good last day of March and good wishes for the new month starting soon.
Many thanks for your comment.

All the best Jan

Mrs Vimes said...

This sounds lovely. While I'm off I'm going to try it. Love this sort of thing with cauli mash on top. One for the freezer as well for back to work teas. Cheers Jan.

DeniseinVA said...

I have been collecting your recipes as I have a house guest staying with me for the next two weeks. Thank you for another great recipe Jan.

Tom said...

My father served in the pacific during WWII and lived on mutton. He never allowed it in the house after that.

Lowcarb team member said...

Hi Mrs Vimes
Good idea to make an extra one for the freezer!
Good idea for cauli mash too!

Enjoy the rest of your Easter break and many thanks for your comment.

All the best Jan

Lowcarb team member said...

Hello Denise
Can you ever have enough recipe ideas?
No, the more the merrier I think! LOL!

Have a lovely time with your house guests.
Many thanks for your comment

All the best Jan

Lowcarb team member said...

Hi Tom
You said, "My father served in the pacific during WWII and lived on mutton. He never allowed it in the house after that" ...

I think that was quite a common experience, as also sated here,"Mutton was a cheap food source for the military, and it was often overcooked and dry. Many American servicemen had their fill of mutton, coming home to declare it off-limits in the family home. This may be another reason why lamb has not become more popular in the States."

Details taken from here

Many thanks for your comment, enjoy this last day of March.

All the best Jan

Conniecrafter said...

very interesting, you know I have never cooked lamb, I guess because my mother never cooked it and so I had no idea how to prepare it. I am not very adventurous when it comes to cooking, never like to try new things but I know my hubby would love it if I was :)

Debbie said...

"more about lamb" - very interesting, i didn't know. my mom made lamb chops and lamb stew when we were growing up, the chops went under the broiler. then we would sop up the grease/juices with white bread and eat it, i remember that being the best part (oh lord). i didn't eat the lamb stew, never, not ever!!!

i have never cooked lamb, never eaten it in a restaurant. i have no aversion, so i'm not sure why!!!!

Jo said...

I love lamb but we don't have it all that often because a) Only Mick and I like it and b) it's quite expensive. I've got some in the freezer though and I'm debating whether to cook it or not tomorrow as it's just Mick and I for tea, Eleanor is going to her boyfriend's. I just love mint sauce too, I can use it with any meat, not just lamb.

Lowcarb team member said...

Hello Connie
I think we do so often follow with what our mum's used to cook. My dear mum loved to serve a roast lamb dinner, shepherds pie (made with minced lamb) or just plain but so tasty lamb chops. The recipe I've shown here can also be made using beef so if you don't think you'll try the lamb with red wine casserole have a look at this beef one here "Beef Bourguignon ... so low carb."

Hope you may consider trying one of these tasty dishes soon ...

Many thanks for your comment

All the best Jan

Lowcarb team member said...

Hi Debbie
My dear mum used to make a wonderful lamb stew, and as I said to Connie above, and so many other lamb dishes too! Good home cooking - and our house always had a delicious aroma of something tasty cooking! I look back and remember fondly ...I can still picture her in the kitchen!

I know what you mean about the taste of lamb juices / lamb fat ... quite yummy!

This is nice "Hearty Lamb Stew - A Wonderful Winter Recipe Idea" - have a look here and see what you think

For myself and Eddie as we follow a LCHF food template buttery mashed swede would be more suitable than the potatoes ... but obviously how you / readers wish to cook and serve it is always a personal choice.

Many thanks for your comment, they are always appreciated.

All the best Jan

Lowcarb team member said...

Hello Jo
Yes, lamb does tend to be more expensive although the supermarkets do have it on special offer from time to time.
I think as it's just you and Mick for dinner tomorrow why not cook a lovely Roast Lamb dinner complete with mint sauce - absolutely delicious ... and as tomorrow is Friday a nice way to start the weekend!

Many thanks for your comment

All the best Jan

Carla from The River said...

Hi ~
Having lamb is a true treat for us here. I do like it. We have not had it in years. It is very expensive.

Lowcarb team member said...

Hi Carla
Yes ... lamb does seem to be expensive, no matter where you live!
Perhaps you could consider a beef in red wine casserole instead?
This is a good recipe:

Or perhaps this one, a nice Winter Green Beef Casserole

Many thanks for your comment

All the best Jan

chris c said...

I've done something similar with lamb chops which become incredibly tender, the meat almost falls off the bone when casseroled.

Currently I'm buying spring lamb which is gloriously fatty and tasty. Though it's more expensive than venison, at least the farmers are finally getting a decent price. Lamb is very "Paleo" as you can take a crop off lands like mountains where nothing else will grow and little input is needed. Time was when wool paid for many of our local churches but now it costs the farmers to have their sheep sheared.

Mutton is little used now as you have to keep the sheep alive for so much longer, not an easy job.

Lowcarb team member said...

Hello Chris
Spring lamb is amazingly tasty and sometimes the supermarkets etc do have special offers on. I try and keep my eyes open for these!
Lamb casseroled does make the meat so tender. I just love cooking lamb slowly with as many vegetables that will go in the pan/pot - very tasty.

Many thanks for your comments

All the best Jan