Middle Eastern Lamb Stew

Middle Eastern Lamb Stew

This brothy stew is boldly flavored with a blend of characteristic Middle Eastern spices and finished with fresh spinach and fiber-rich chickpeas. Economical lamb shoulder tenderizes beautifully when leisurely cooked in a slow cooker. If you can't find boneless shoulder stew meat, do not substitute more-expensive lamb leg—it tends to dry out during slow cooking. Instead, purchase lamb shoulder chops and debone them. Serve over bulgur and accompany with a salad.

From EatingWell: January/February 2008
Yield: 8 servings, about 1 cup each
Active Time: 40
Total Time: 255

Ingredients

  1. 1 1/2 pounds boneless lamb stew meat, (shoulder cut) or 2 1/2 pounds lamb shoulder chops, deboned, trimmed and cut into 1-inch chunks
  2. 1 tablespoon olive oil, or canola oil
  3. 4 teaspoons ground cumin
  4. 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  5. 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  6. 1/4 teaspoon salt
  7. Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  8. 1 large or 2 medium onions, chopped
  9. 1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes
  10. 3/4 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
  11. 4 cloves garlic, minced
  12. 1 15- or 19-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed
  13. 6 ounces baby spinach

Preparation

  1. Place lamb in a 4-quart or larger slow cooker. Mix oil, cumin, coriander, cayenne, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Coat the lamb with the spice paste and toss to coat well. Top with onion.
  2. Bring tomatoes, broth and garlic to a simmer in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Pour over the lamb and onion. Cover and cook until the lamb is very tender, 3 to 3 1/2 hours on high or 5 1/2 to 6 hours on low.
  3. Skim or blot any visible fat from the surface of the stew. Mash 1/2 cup chickpeas with a fork in a small bowl. Stir the mashed and whole chickpeas into the stew, along with spinach. Cover and cook on high until the spinach is wilted, about 5 minutes.

Tips & Notes

  • Make Ahead Tip: Prepare the stew, omitting the spinach, cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days or freeze for up to 4 months. Add spinach after the stew is reheated. | Prep ahead: Trim lamb and coat with spice mixture. Chop onions. Combine broth, tomatoes and garlic. Refrigerate in separate covered containers for up to 1 day.

Nutrition

Nutrition Per Serving: 319 calories; 15 g fat (5 g sat, 6 g mono); 92 mg cholesterol; 15 g carbohydrates; 30 g protein; 5 g fiber; 494 mg sodium; 238 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (30% daily value), Vitamin A (25% dv), Iron (20% dv).

1 Carbohydrate Serving

Exchanges: 1/2 starch, 1 vegetable, 3 lean meat