Recipe: Lamb and Freekeh Stew

Spoiler alert: we make a lot of stews throughout the fall and winter months. We'll usually make one on Monday night, eat it all week for lunch, and throw the extra in the freezer. And we'll do this over and over. This week Jake wanted to make something that tasted the way our recent Berkshire hikes smelled. Hey, inspiration comes from all places, right? 

As an earthy starting point, we got some cubed lamb pieces from Arcadian Pastures, and a variety of mushrooms from Mardura. Next, we were off to Cayuga Pure Organics, once again seeking their grain wisdom. Even before we finished describing what we had in mind, they handed us some Freekeh. Freekeh, they explained, are roasted green spelt berries and we love spelt so it was an easy sell. Another bonus: the grain comes from North African and Middle-Eastern cooking traditions, where lamb is often the focal point.

We already had some duck stock in the freezer from our last roast and we figured it would play into our stew perfectly. We picked up carrot and leek bunches from Migliorelli and headed over the Windfall Farms to do some research on greens. They suggested Senposai - or Japanese collards - which are very similar to American collards, only sweeter. Sounded great! And finally to serve along side, a boule from Hot Bread Kitchen, knowing we still had some Monterey Chevre in the fridge.

We headed home, took out the cast iron kettle and started to cook. Almost immediately the apartment was filled with the most amazing aroma - just like the woods after a rainy fall day!

Lamb Stew with Freekeh
+ 1 pound lamb cubed for stew (cut from the shoulder or leg)
+ 1 pound of Freekeh
+ 1 pound of mushrooms, sliced
+ 4 cups of stock
+ 4 carrots, cut up into ¼ in slices
+ 4 leeks, cut up into ¼ in slices
+ 1 bunch of heart greens, like collards, sliced into ribbons
+ 1 cup of flower
+ ½ cup salt
+ 3 tablespoons of oil

1. On a large plate mix salt and flour. Coat the the lamb pieces in the mixture.
2. In a heavy pot or dutch oven heat the oil on medium-high heat. When hot, brown the lamb in batches, a few minutes on each side.
3. Meanwhile prepare leeks and carrots. When all the lamb is browned put in a bowl and set aside. Add the carrots and onions to the pot. 
4. When the carrots and onions begin to soften and brown, add the mushrooms. When the mushrooms start to brown and emit a strong mushroomy aroma, add the stock and the lamb and bring to a simmer. Cover.
5. After a half hour, rinse the freekeh like you would rice and then add to pot. Bring back to a boil and then bring down to a steady simmer. Cover.
6. After another half hour add greens. Cover and simmer for half hour. Serve.

Serves 6

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