Feed the whole family with this hearty slow-cooked neck of lamb stew from Gennaro’s Cucina by Gennaro Contaldo.
Neck of lamb is an economical cut of meat and ideal for slow-cooked stews such as this one. Ask your butcher for slices of lamb neck as these will make it quicker and easier to cook. Lamb has always been a popular meat in rural areas in central and southern Italy and, with the addition of potatoes here, makes a lovely one-pot meal. The potatoes help the liquid to thicken nicely without the need to add any thickening agents. Serve with lots of good rustic bread to mop up the juices.
4 slices of lamb neck (approx. 800g/1lb 12oz total weight)
Plain flour, for dusting
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 anchovy fillets
2 onions, cut into quarters
2 large carrots, cut into chunks
8 thyme sprigs
900ml (31fl oz) chicken stock
500g (1lb 2oz) potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
Rustic bread, to serve
Coat the lamb slices in flour, shaking off any excess. Heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan, add the anchovy fillets and lamb and cook over a medium heat until the lamb is sealed and the anchovy fillets have dissolved, about 10 minutes. Transfer the lamb to a plate and set aside.
In the same pan, add the onions and sweat over a medium heat for a couple of minutes. Stir in the carrots and thyme and continue to cook for a minute. Return the lamb to the pan, placing it over the vegetables. Pour over the stock, bring to the boil, then reduce the heat, partially cover with a lid and cook gently for 1 hour 20 minutes.
After this time, add the potatoes and continue to cook without the lid for a further 25 minutes until the potatoes are cooked and the liquid has thickened slightly.
Remove from the heat and serve immediately with lots of rustic bread.