Mutton stew with anchovies

 In Autumn, Ingredients, Meat, Poultry & Game, Mutton/Lamb, Seasons, Slow Cooked, Stews, Winter

Anchovies are a fairly standard ingredient for adding umami, that indescribable flavour characteristic, and nowhere better than alongside the rich flavour of mutton in a fairly classic Roman flavour combination. I cooked this stew over the fire but you could just as easily do it on the hob or in the oven, actually it would be a lot easier. I’ve added in a lamb shank for the richness of the bone, and also for a little contrast of flavour.

Mutton stew with anchovies

(serves 3-4)

500g diced mutton
1 lamb foreshank
250ml red wine (I used pinot noir)
1tsp salt
1 carrot finely diced
1 onion finely chopped
2 sticks celery finely chopped
1 clove garlic
1 tbsp olive oil
250g cherry tomatoes
50g anchovies in oil
Black pepper
1 large sprig rosemary
1 bay leaf

  1. Rub half the salt over the meat, place in glass or ceramic dish and pour over the wine. Leave to marinade for several hours, preferably overnight.
  2. In an ovenproof casserole dish, soften the carrot, onion, garlic, and celery, in the oil, ensuring it doesn’t colour;
  3. Add the mutton, lamb shank, tomatoes, herbs, salt, and pepper. Add the anchovies and their oil, pour over the wine and cover with a lid. Bring to the boil then reduce to the lowest simmer, cook for 3-4 hours until the meat is tender. Serve

Note: I cooked the soffits of onion, celery, carrot, and garlic the night before when cooking in Dutch oven over fire, just to ensure it softened without burning.

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