Lamb and Barley Stew
The Snook and I watched the “Barley” episode of Good Eats last weekend, and I became obsessed with his lamb and barley stew. I picked up the ingredients Monday night (one lamb shoulder, one bag pearl barley, three carrots). I soon realized I had a problem. The original recipe actually calls for barley grits. Well, neither Coles nor Harris Farm had that. Snookums did some research and found this recipe, where someone in the same dilemma decided to make her own. We decided to follow her advice. (You can’t just substitute plain pearl barley, as it takes a lot longer to cook.)

Lamb and Barley Stew   Lamb and Barley Stew

Thursday night Snookums roasted the barley in a pan on low heat for an hour, stirring occasionally. Then he whizzed it up in our spice grinder (an old coffee grinder) to chop it up a bit. Meanwhile, I went to town on the lamb shoulder with a big sharp knife. We browned the lamb in seasoned flour, then combined the carrot, lamb, barley, and chicken stock. It then cooked for about 35 minutes. I was worried that with so few ingredients, it might be bland. I WAS SO WRONG. It was all nutty, roasty, lamby goodness. I couldn’t get enough of it. It’s so warming and filling. This is the perfect recipe for winter. I highly, highly recommend it, especially if you can find the barley grits pre-made. But I’d say it’s still worth the extra work even if you can’t…