As I have said before lamb shoulder chops won’t win any beauty
contest, but they are an economic cut which allow you to enjoy the flavour of lamb at a fraction of the cost of the more glamourous cuts.
Here I have teamed lamb shoulder chops with bacon, parsnips and fennel to make a light and warming winter stew – I have used no thickening, but if you prefer you could thicken with cornflour at the end of cooking.
Lamb, Parsnip & Bacon Stew
2 rashers bacon, rind removed, meat cut into strips
4 (750g-1kg) lamb shoulder chops
1 onion, cut into wedges
1 fennel bulb, trimmed, halved lengthwise and cut into wedges
2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
2-4 parsnips, peeled and cut into 1cm pieces
1 bay leaf
1 cup red or white wine
1 cup chicken stock
handful chopped parsley
1 Place bacon and a splash of oil in a large, deep-sided frying pan with a lid over a medium heat and cook, stirring occasionally,
until bacon renders its fat. Remove bacon from pan, leaving behind as much fat as possible.
2 Season lamb with a good grind of salt. Increase heat, add lamb chops to pan and cook for 4-5 minutes each to brown. Remove lamb from pan and set aside.
3 Reduce heat, add onion and fennel to pan, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, for 8-10 minutes or until onions start to soften and fennel caramelise. Add garlic and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds or until fragrant. Add parsnips and mix to combine. Stir in bay leaf, wine and stock, cover and bring to simmering.
4 Return bacon and lamb to pan, cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 1 hour or until lamb is tender and falling off the bone. Stir in parsley, reserving a little for scattering.
So tell me, do you use lamb shoulder chops and if you do, what is your favourite way of preparing them?
Where did the ingredients for this dish come from:
Lamb: Mad Butcher – Hastings; Onion, garlic, parsnips: Krismaw Gardens – Hastings; Fennel, parsley: The Chef’s Garden @
Epicurean – Hastings; Store Cupboard Ingredients: bay leaf, stock, wine, salt, black pepper.
Note: Many of these producers can be found at the Napier Urban Food Market each Saturday morning and/or at the Hawke’s Bay Farmers’
Market each Sunday morning.
Happy cooking and eating.
Recipe by Rachel Blackmore
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