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Dinner Tonight | LEARNING TO COOK

Hot Stew for a Cool Day

November 08, 2000|MARION CUNNINGHAM

When two friends came late one cool fall day and stayed for supper, I cooked an old favorite, Irish Stew. This simple stew will cheer you. Serve it with corn bread and finish the supper with warm applesauce sweetened with brown sugar and drizzled with cream.

This soup-like stew requires very little effort or attention. All you need to do is check it occasionally as it simmers.

Though Irish stew traditionally is made with lamb, I also tried tri-tip for my version. Tri-tip, which produces a good-tasting stew as well, is less expensive than lamb.

Irish Stew

Active Work Time: 40 minutes * Total Preparation Time: 1 hour 40 minutes

This is good served with horseradish on the side.

3 pounds boneless lamb shoulder or beef tri-tip

Salt, pepper

4 carrots

2 white turnips

2 onions

3 tablespoons shortening

7 cups boiling water

2 bay leaves, torn in half

* Cut meat into 1 1/2-inch cubes. Spread it on a piece of wax paper and salt and pepper pieces liberally. Set aside.

* Peel carrots, slice them into 1/4-inch pieces and place in a bowl. Cut stem top and root bottom off turnips. Peel and slice into pieces about 1/4-inch thick. Add to carrots. Cut stem top and root bottom off onions and, using a paring knife, peel the papery outside skin off and discard. Cut the onion in half horizontally. Put each half flat side down on the cutting board and slice into 1/4-inch slices. Add onions to vegetables and set aside.

* Melt shortening in large pot over medium-high heat and add meat. Brown well, 5 to 6 minutes, turning cubes over to brown on all sides. Standing back a bit from the pot, slowly add boiling water to meat. It will bubble up and turn a golden brown. Stir and reduce heat to medium-low. Add half the carrots, turnips, onions and bay leaves, stir, and cover.

* Cook 30 minutes, then add remaining vegetables and bay leaves. Taste for salt and add if needed. Cover and cook until meat is tender and thoroughly cooked and vegetables are tender, 30 minutes more. Serve hot.

4 servings. Each serving: 702 calories; 333 mg sodium; 168 mg cholesterol; 28 grams fat; 58 grams carbohydrates; 57 grams protein; 6.79 grams fiber.

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