Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Jamaican Lamb Curry

Leftovers. Who doesn't have a love/hate relationship with them? I mean we have way more food in our house at the moment than I can ever see us eating for some reason (well, partially because I have pre-baked stuff for work in the freezer), yet neither my mom nor I (the two cooks in the house) can bear to throw anything away that is still actually edible. I never grew up wanting for any of the basics like food and shelter, and though my mom grew up in a low-middle class home she didn't go hungry either - so neither of us can explain our frugal nature (except that we have a Scottish background and she grew up in a Jewish neighbourhood - her words not mine!).

And yet, here we are for another Waste Not Want Not Wednesday (and Allergy-Free Wednesday). Granted, I planned the leftovers to make this, since it had been a while since I had made my dad anything savoury and when we were breaking down the lamb for our Easter stew my mom was leaving a lot of meat on the bone which I knew I could salvage! I stuck the pieces into a plastic bag and froze it for when I had other remnants perfect for a good, hearty dish - and when some end-of-the-line baby carrots, half a gigantic onion, a sad-looking tomato and a Thai chili from the back of our fridge (that had been there since the summer and was still good!) made themselves known I had the makings of one of his favourites - Jamaican curry stew.

Baked in a casserole for 2 hours, this melange of spicy gravy, vegetables and lamb comes out meltingly tender and rich. Being made of "bits and pieces", it also doesn't make a ton of food (even though it just gets better the next day), and the whole thing is not only gluten, nut, egg, refined sugar and dairy-free, but it is deceptively low in fat and filled with fibre!

Jamaican Lamb Curry

Shared with Waste Not Want Not Wednesday #27 at Poor and Gluten Free and Allergy-Free Wednesday at The Tasty Alternative.

Jamaican Lamb Curry
Serves 2
1/3 lb lamb leg meat, cut into strips or small cubes (I used trimmings from a leg we used for stew)
1 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp Barbados (fancy) molasses
1 minced Thai chili (or half a habanero)
3 garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced
1/2 tbsp coconut oil
1/2 large Spanish onion, sliced into half-moons
4 oz carrots, diced
1 large tomato, diced
1 tsp curry powder
1/2 tsp ground allspice
pinch cinnamon
pinch ground cloves
1 tbsp dark rum (you can leave this our if desired)
3/4 cup water
  1. Heat the oven to 350F and lightly grease a small square casserole (with a cover).
  2. Place the lamb in the casserole and top with the thyme, pepper, salt, molasses, chili and garlic. Set aside.
  3. Heat coconut oil in a large cast-iron pan or wok over medium heat.
  4. Add the onion and carrots and cook, stirring occasionally, for 6-7 minutes.
  5. Add the tomato and cook 1-2 minutes longer, until it begins to break down.
  6. Stir in the curry powder, allspice, cinnamon and cloves with rum and 1/4 cup of the water.
  7. Cook for a further 2 minutes, stirring, then pour over the lamb and stir to combine.
  8. Add remaining water, cover and cook for 1 1/2 hours.
  9. Uncover, stir and cook (uncovered) another 30-40 minutes, until liquid is reduced and meat is tender.
  10. Awesome served over rice, roasted potatoes or your favourite ancient grain.
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 222.4
Total Fat: 8.5 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 98.7 mg
Total Carbs: 18.6 g
Dietary Fiber: 3.9 g
Protein: 16.1 g