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Quince and Lamb stew

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Serves 6

my version of a recipe I first saw in Claudia Roden's Miediterranean Food - couldn't find it, so I improvised. Subtle and delicious.

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  • 1.6 kg lamb shoulder, cut into serving pieces
  • 2 large onions, chopped
  • tsp black peppercorns
  • tsp allspice berries
  • tsp cloves
  • tbsp fresh ginger, minced
  • olive oil for frying
  • 3 medium sized quinces
  • water to cover
  • salt to taste


    1. Brown the pieces of meat lightly all over in the oil in a large saucepan or casserole dish. Do this in batches, to keep the oil hot enough, and keep the meat aside in a bowl.
    2. Fry the chopped onions gently in the same oil for about 10 mins.
    3. Pound or grind the spices and add to the onions.
    4. Add the meat to the saucepan with any juices, stir once and cover with water.
    5. Simmer for 1 hour or more according to how tender you think the lamb will be.
    6. Meanwhile, rub the downy bloom off the quinces, wash them and cut in quarters. Remove the cores and keep them for making stewed quince compote (if you like). Slice the quarters thickly and add them to the stew 30 minutes before the end. The whole time should be at least 1hr 30 minutes. Serve with rice.
    7. If you make this stew the day before you eat it, you can drain all the liquid off and when cool, put it in the fridge so that the fat can be easily lifted off the surface. Then you can recombine liquid and solids and reheat.

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