I think you’ll all have gathered my now that I’m no fancy schmancy cook. Although I’d love to spend hours in the kitchen cooking up impressive new dishes, with two small kids I just don’t have the time. Cooking dinner often involves turning the oven or hob on and off several times so I can deal with a nappy explosion, an emergency feed or a temper tantrum. And that’s why I absolutely love slow cooked one pot meals. I can prepare dinner earlier in the day when my oldest is at nursery and the baby is napping and then leave it to cook.
Another reason I love slow cooking is that you can use relatively inexpensive cuts of meat. I really would recommend buying these cheaper meats from your butcher as they tend to have a lot more variety than the supermarkets.
My fussy eating family gobble this dish down every time I make it. It also keeps really well in the fridge if you want to make extra to have for lunch the next day.
Serve with this easy garlic and rosemary ciabatta bread. If you have some leftover ciabatta, don’t let it go to waste. Make this delicious Parmesan Bread Pudding.
- 2 tbsp flour
- 400g lamb, diced
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
- 200ml lamb stock
- 200ml red wine (or stock if you prefer)
- 200g orzo
- 20 black olives
- Garlic & Rosemary Bread:
- 1 ciabatta loaf, sliced
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- 1 tsp fresh rosemary, finely chopped
- Preheat the oven to 180c.
- Dust the lamb chunks in flour spread onto a plate. Heat the olive oil in a heavy bottomed casserole dish and fry the lamb in batches of 4 or 5 pieces until browned all over. Place the browned lamb in a bowl and keep to one side.
- Lightly fry the onion, garlic and cinnamon stick (add more olive oil if necessary) for 5 mins, stirring regularly. Add the bay leaves and oregano and cook for a further 2 minutes.
- Add the chopped tomatoes, stock and wine if using. Scrape the bottom of the dish with a wooden spoon to release the frying flavours.
- Bring the sauce to the boil and add the lamb back in. Put the lid on the casserole dish and put in the oven for 2 to 3 hours (the longer the better!)
- After a minimum of 2 hours take the dish out of the oven and remove the cinnamon stick and bay leaves. Add the orzo. The sauce should still look quite runny at this stage but the orzo will soak it up. If the sauce is looking too thick you can add extra stock or wine. Return to the oven for a further 15 minutes.
- Add the black olives and return for a final 5 minutes in the oven.
- Gently dry fry the ciabatta slices on a griddle pan for 1-2 minutes either side. Make the herb butter by mixing the garlic and rosemary in with the butter.