I know most people in America are making corned beef and cabbage for St. Patrick’s Day. However, if you’re searching for something a bit more traditional, let me suggest Irish stew! It isn’t all that different than a traditional beef stew except this one is made with lamb meat and cooked with a stout beer. The combination of lamb and beer, I think, gives it a unique and delicious flavor. The beer adds depth and doesn’t taste like beer at all! Although you could easily substitute wine and beef for a more common beef stew, lamb is a much more traditional protein for Ireland.
What you’ll need:
- 2 lbs Lamb meat, cut into 1 inch pieces
- 3 Tbsp Olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion
- 2 Tbsp (4 cloves) of garlic
- 1/3 Cup Flour
- 1/4 Cup diced stewed tomatoes
- 4 Cups of Beef Broth (you can substitute chicken broth)
- 12 oz stout beer – many people choose Guinness, but any dark beer will do.
- 2 cups chopped carrots
- 2 cups chopped red potatoes
- 1 Tsp salt
- 1/2 Tsp pepper
- 1 Tsp thyme
How to Cook Irish Stew
The most important part in all of this is braising the lamb meat. It needs that nice brown crust on it before adding the meat to the crockpot to finish cooking. I do most of my stove-top cooking in a cast iron pan, because the flavor is so much better than using any other type of pan.
Sear the lamb long enough to get a nice brown crust on both sides. Once lamb meat is seared, the juices from the meat and the leftover olive oil serve as the perfect companion to the onions and garlic, which are then sautéed and caramelized.
You’ll add in the flour first and coat the onions and garlic. Then you’ll add in the tomatoes and the stout beer. Cook the ingredients until thickened (about 10 minutes). Once you get a nice thickened paste, add in the beef broth and simmer, stirring frequently, until combined. Set aside away from heat.
In your crockpot, throw in the lamb, potatoes, carrots, salt, pepper and thyme. Pour everything from the pan over the ingredients in the crockpot.
Cook on high for 1 hour, followed by cooking on low for an additional 3 hours (or until all root vegetables are cooked through).
If you don’t have a crockpot, or would prefer to cook it on the stove, you can simmer on low for a few hours. Add the potatoes, carrots and lamb to the broth mixture. Make sure that the pan your working in is deep enough. I would suggest using a dutch oven. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for 3 hours.
Crockpot Irish Stew
Absolutely delicious, easy to make and with deep flavors, this traditional Irish stew is made in a crockpot. Using lamb meat and stout beer, celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with this Irish stew that’s sure to please.
- 2 Lbs Lamb Meat Cut into 1’’ pieces
- 3 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 Medium Yellow Onion Diced
- 2 Tbsp Garlic Diced (about 4 cloves)
- 1/3 Cup Flour
- 1/4 Cup Diced stewed tomatoes
- 12 Oz Stout Beer Any dark beer will do
- 4 Cups Beef broth Chicken broth can be substituted
- 2 Cups Carrots Chopped
- 2 Cups Red Skinned Potatoes Chopped
- 1 Tsp Dried Thyme
- 1 Tsp Salt
- 1/2 Tsp Pepper
Heat olive oil on the stove in a large, deep pan.
Sear lamb in heated olive oil, cook on medium-high until a nice brown crust appears. Once lamb has been seared on both sides, remove from pan and set aside.
Add onions and garlic to pan. Sauté onions until carmelized on medium-low heat.
Pour flour over onions and garlic and mix until completely coated. Add in tomatoes and beer. Stir continuously until mixture thickens.
Pour beef broth into the pan and mix until broth mixture is completely incorporated.
In a crockpot, place lamb meat, carrots, potatoes, salt pepper and thyme.
Pour broth mixture over the lamb and root vegetables.
Cook on high for one hour, followed by cooking on low for 3 hours (or until root vegetables are cooked through). Enjoy with some bread and butter on the side, and add in Irish Soda Bread with freshly made strawberry jam for dessert!