Comfort Food: Savory Lamb Stew

With rich, sweet, and fattening foods of the holiday season at every turn the last couple of weeks, I thought it was a great time for something comforting, warm and cozy for supper as the holiday season winds down (and a cold front heads in), so I prepared a huge pot of lamb stew.

Soups and stews are such versatile dishes to make and serve. You can make them as simple or as elaborate as you desire; use them as a first course or the main course for dinner any time of year.

Stews are also a very easy dish to make, although time consuming, and you can even change up what meats you use if you desire. This recipe would be particularly delicious with venison and also beef, but lamb is by far our favorite.  It’s a very tender and flavorful meat!

 

Savory Lamb Stew

You’ll need an oven-proof pot for making the stew.  I highly recommend a cast iron or enamel-coated dutch oven.  For our stew I used 3 pounds of lamb, cubed which makes a fairly large pot. I like for stews and soups to last more than one meal, so I always make a huge pot!

Besides, stew always tastes even better the second day so go ahead and make that big pot!

Other ingredients you’ll need include potatoes, carrots, onions, mushrooms, garlic, red wine, beef stock, a little flour as well as salt & pepper. Very basic ingredients that most of us keep on hand.

Y’all, I’m really bad about not measuring ingredients, so when you look at the full recipe I totally guessed on how much veggies you need.  Thankfully this recipe is really easy to adapt for your family.

Always be open to to adaption when you are in the kitchen.

I used a 10-quart enameled cast iron pot made by Lodge to prepare the recipe from start to finish.

{One pot!  Who doesn’t love that?!}

You begin making the stew by swiping your chopped lamb pieces  through flour then cooking in bacon grease or olive oil. I used the grease from one full pound of bacon (save the bacon for salad topper or make a yummy BLT sandwich while the stew simmers) for cooking my stew meat. Once all the stew meat is browned, remove from the pot and pour 1 1/2 cups red wine into your pot, scrapping to deglaze it.  Scraping the bits of browned lamb will keep them from scorching while it all cooks and of course you want that flavor!

Once deglazed return the meat to the pot and add the potatoes, carrots, onion, & garlic to the pot. This isn’t on the printable version of the recipe, but if you like garlic, add dried garlic flakes to your stew as well! Just a small way to elevate the flavor.

Pour beef stock over it until everything is completely covered. Cover the pot with a lid and place in the oven at 375° and simmer for 1.5  to 2 hours.

Garnish with parsley and serve with crusty French bread. Turn on some contemporaty jazz (FYI, Harry Connick, Jr. has a new album), enjoy a quiet and cozy night in, around the table with this savory stew and your family.

For the full printable recipe, click Savory Lamb Stew

Wishing you all a quiet and peaceful New Years Eve with a New Year full of blessings!

Goat Cheese Truffles

It’s holiday party time and it seem everyone is having one from work to the neighbors, and then it’ll be time for family Christmas… or three!

With all our get-togethers generally comes the invitation to bring a dish or an appetizer. Today I’m sharing this super easy goat cheese truffle that you can whip up, dress up, and introduce an oft forgotten soft cheese to your friends and family for a unique flavor.

I didn’t come up with this recipe on my own. It’s from one of those videos that circulates Facebook (not even sure where it originated from) where you watch it once and can never find it again, so you spend a couple of days trying to remember the ingredients, waste a few ingredients, and then hope for the best when you finally decide to serve it.

{BTW, If you know the originator of the recipe, let me know!!}

 Since these were all eaten when I made them I’m assuming I did ok guessing ingredients and measurements.

These truffles are easy to make, quite flavorful and really pretty when displayed on an appetizer table. If you love cheese and all its delicious varieties that are out there, this is perfect!

 

The shopping list for this recipe is easy:  cream cheese, goat cheese, cinnamon, honey, pecans, Craisins, and parsley. You can purchase the pecans and parsley already chopped if you want, so that makes it even easier!

I used eight ounces of cream cheese and six ounces of goat cheese. This combination can be played with depending on how strong you want the truffles. Goat cheese is delicious, but very strong. With both being soft cheeses they mixed smoothly together. After blending the two cheeses I mixed in the honey, some of the pecan pieces, and cinnamon.

After combining the cheese mixture, the truffles need coating. To do this I used wax paper and combined the leftover pecans, minced parsley and craisins in a pile on the paper.  Roll the cheese mixture into 1-inch balls and then roll in the pecan mix you made to coat.  Do this until all the cheese has been rolled into a finished truffle.

Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. Set a jar of honey out for guests to drizzle on their truffles as they are served.

 

For the full and printable recipe, click Goat Cheese Truffles .

 

Happy Wednesday y’all!  Just one week until Christmas!

 

Holiday in the Park at 6 Flags Over Georgia

Nothing says “BRING ON CHRISTMAS” like family time, twinkle lights, Christmas carols, and tree lightening ceremonies! Entering its sixth year, 6 Flags Over Georgia is celebrating the season with all the above plus rides galore with their annual Holiday in the Park celebration. Bring out the family for an evening of festive fun throughout the whole season! You’ll want to make it a tradition to keep year after year!

Madeline and I ventured out to the park for media day last week and had such a fantastic time strolling through the park under twinkle lights, listening to the wonderful sounds of the season, munching on s’mores, and letting our inner children out for a fun mother/daughter evening!

Christmas always makes me feel young, but diving into the season truly brings out my childlike spirit.

With a variety of shows from the comedy of Bad Bob Humbug to the “Step Into Christmas” musical revue at the Crystal Pistol, s’mores pits scattered around the park, themed light displays all around (including a tunnel with lights dancing to the music), carolers and a tree lighting at the main entrance there is something to bring out the Clark Griswald in us all!

Here’s a peak at some of the fun we enjoyed in the park.

 

The festive Crystal Pistol theater

Mrs Claus at the North Pole entrance

It’s a peachy Christmas season here in Georgia!

As you can see, Holiday in the Park offers something for everyone in the family no matter what your age!

“Holiday in the Park is the Southeast’s premier holiday experience and is a family tradition for all to see and enjoy,” said Park President Dan Kaetzel. “Nowhere else will you experience all the magic of the holiday season with more than 30 thrilling rides, enchanting shows, the mouthwatering flavors of the season and of course a visit to the North Pole to see Santa Claus. It’s the perfect time of year to gather family and visit our extraordinary park.”

Holiday in the Park operates on select days now through January 5, 2020.

Six Flags Over Georgia

275 Riverside Pkwy

Austell, GA 30168