Showing posts with label onions. Show all posts
Showing posts with label onions. Show all posts

Tuesday, 17 May 2016

Labskaus - Lobscouse – Lobsgóws

Labskaus - Lobscouse – Lobsgóws

The origin of the name is unclear but Labskaus was first mentioned in Germany in 1701 for a dish associated with sailors.  At that time they would be at sea for weeks and sometimes months and had to use provisions that would last a long time such as salted meat, potatoes and onions.  This dish can still be found on menus in Northern German, Danish and Swedish restaurant with many variations including the Schleswig-Holstein version which includes beetroot, gherkin and rollmops topped with a fried egg.  Takes a bit of getting use to as it comes out pink.

The seafarers from Northern Germany naturally came to Liverpool docks and passed on the recipe which was adopted to such an extent that those working in Liverpool docks were called ‘Scoucers’ after this dish.

In the 19th Century thousands of Welsh people flocked to Liverpool to find work.  They brought the recipe back with them and adjusted it slightly depending on where they lived, the local ingredients available and include either beef, lamb or pork.

Each family in North Wales will have their own version of Lobsgóws this is my version with a few added ingredients from the traditional.

Serves 4 to 5

500g Diced beef  (traditional shin beef but I tend to use stewing steak)
500g Diced Potatoes
250g Diced carrots
250g Chopped onions
250g Diced parsnips
250g Diced Swede
2 tablespoons
2 teaspoon Sherry vinegar
3 teaspoon Red Current Jelly
2 teaspoons Worcester sauce
1 teaspoon Thyme
¼ teaspoon Pepper
Stock enough to cover
Salt to taste

Add oil to a heavy base casserole dish and fry the meat in batches until brown.
Remove meat from dish and reduce the heat and gently fry the onion until soft.
Return beef to casserole dish add the stock, vinegar, redcurrant jelly, Worcester sauce, thyme and pepper.  
Place casserole dish in a preheated oven at 160ºC and cook for 1 hour.
Add the diced vegetables and more stock to cover if needed and return to the oven at 150ºC for a further two hours.  
Check after 1 hour to see if more water is required and taste, add more seasoning if required.
After cooking for 2 hours check if meat is nice and tender, if not cook for a further ½ hour.
This dish can then be served with crusty bread, but it will taste even better if left for one day and then reheated.

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Slow Roasted Welsh Leg of Lamb

Slow Roasted Welsh Leg of Lamb

This dish is dedicated to Gianna who has asked me for this recipe every time she comes over from Italy with her family to stay at our house.  Finally after a number of years I have sat down to write the recipe.

Welsh lamb is succulent, flavoursome and when cooked slowly as in this dish there is hardly the need to carve the meat as it just falls apart when you serve.

To me Welsh lamb when cooked properly is one of the best meats available and with over 11 million sheep in Wales we have had enough opportunity to practice cooking it.

There are two ways to cook a leg of lamb which will depend on the age and time of year you buy it. Spring lamb needs to be cooked quickly at a high heat and should be slightly pink when carved but I prefer mine when the lamb in slightly older, autumn time, as I believe it has more taste.  This leg of lamb needs to be cooked at a high heat and then turned down and cooked slowly for a few hours.

I bought this leg in my local butchers in Denbigh, J H Jones and the lamb came from the butchers own farm in Cyffylliog, how more local than that can you get.

For this dish I have kept the ingredients simple.

Serves 6 to 8 people

Whole leg of Welsh Lamb 2.6kgs

3 sprigs of rosemary  chopped or 2 tsp chopped dried rosemary
2 bay leaves chopped
1 tbs olive oil
1 large bulb of garlic, cloves pealed
1/2tsp pepper corns
1/2tsp salt

For the gravy
2 carrots
1 onion
1 garlic bulb
1tbs flour

Place all the ingredients for the paste in a pestle and mortar and bash away till you have a reasonably smooth paste.  Pierce the meat with a sharp knife, don't be shy you need the flavours to permeate throughout the joint.  Smother the leg of lamb with the paste, cover and allow to marinade for at least 2 hours or preferably overnight in the fridge.

When you are ready to cook take a roasting tin cut a large carrot or two small carrots in half. Remove the skin from the onion and cut into four.  Cut the bulb of garlic in half and place all in the bottom of the roasting tin.  Pour in 500ml of water and then place the lamb on top of the vegetables.  Cover with foil and place the roasting tin in a preheated oven at 200°C for about 35 to 40 minutes.  Reduce the heat after this to 160°C and cook for a further 2 1/2 hours.

For the last 1/2 hour remove the foil.  When cooked place the lamb on a warm serving plate to rest and cover with foil.  The vegetables in the roasting tin will have cooked down and combined with the meat juices will provide a fantastic basis for your gravy.  

After you have removed the lamb remove the veg and place in a bowl, carefully prise out the succulent garlic cloves from their casings and then discard the peelings, and pour the juices into the bowl.  Allow to stand for a minute until you can see the fat raise to the top, remove the fat and place back into the roasting tin then blitz the remaining juices and veg together.  Put the roasting tin on a low to medium heat and when the fat starts to bubble add a heaped tablespoon of flour.  This is where you need to be quick with a whisk stir quickly to mix the fat and flour together in the tin.  When you have a paste type consistency start adding the remaining juices and mix together.  You will need to add water at this point till the gravy is at the consistency you like.

Serve the lamb with your favourite veg and potatoes and don't forget the mint sauce.