Lockdown Lamb Hotpot

This second lockdown has been tough for everyone – the days are shorter, the nights are longer and the temperature is lower. All in all it’s been a bit of a grim experience.

The highlight has been my social bubble – those friends who have helped me navigate the past month with love, laughter, long walks in the park and Zoom calls to die for.

I made this hotpot for the one Social Bubble Buddy I was allowed to meet indoors. I’m trying to be good with my money to make it last longer while looking for work, so I’m creating dishes that can feed many people for at least two days.

This recipe is an absolute belter – it has minimal ingredients, is easy to put together and tastes great heated up as leftovers. And it’s best to use the cheaper cuts of lamb – you’re going to cook this for an age so they’ll soften up nicely while tasting superb.

For all you purists out there, this is not a Lancashire Hotpot which has kidneys in it – my last experience with those still has me traumatised.

Music to listen to while preparing this dish: ‘Spooky’ by Dusty Springfield

Ingredients

  • 900g Lamb, cut into small chunks
  • 2 Large onions, thinly sliced
  • 3 Large potatoes, thinly sliced
  • 3 Sprigs thyme, leaves removed
  • 1L Hot lamb stock
  • Flour for dusting
  • Salt and pepper
  • Butter

Method

  1. Heat your oven to 170 fan and generously grease a large casserole dish with butter.
  2. Lightly dust the lamb with the flour – you want a delicate coating, not a smothering.
  3. Now’s the time to start your layering – start with a layer of potatoes, then your lamb, then half your thyme, then half the onions. Remember to season each layer as you go. Each layer should be packed with lamb and onions.
  4. Repeat the process ending with an artistically arranged layer of potatoes. Dot the top layer with generous amounts of butter.
  5. Gently pour in your hot stock – the fluid should just nip the heels of your top layer, not drown it.
  6. Cover your casserole and cook for three hours. Remove the lid for the last hour so the spuds crisp up (mine was a little pale). If your potatoes start to catch, push down with a spoon to coat them with a little lamb liquor.

Serve with a Wilfrid Rousse Chinon Clos de la Roche – tasty but not too heavy.

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