I found this interesting recipe in the book The Country Cooking of Italy (Colman Andrews). I have slightly adapted it in my own way, offering you a quick option – easily to prepare for every home cook. The stew is aromatic with many natural pleasant acidic notes; combines wonderful flavors from the East and the Mediterranean.
750 g lamb meat (tender, deboned, cut into small pieces)
700 g artichoke, core (I use it drained from a can, because it’s easier, more convenient and quick; if you use fresh – consider more time for cleaning and heat treatment);
150 g olives, pitted and cut lengthwise into halves (select good, high-quality olives);
olive oil/sunflower oil for frying
1 ½ cup white wine
black pepper to taste
1 head of garlic, onto cloves (I cut them lengthways into halves)
rosemary to taste (dried)
parsley to taste, finely chopped
I do not add salt because the olives and the artichoke from the can are salty (at your discretion).
In a saucepan I stew the lamb meat in olive oil and a little water, while continuously stirring (finally getting roasted on all sides). It is best to try a piece to make sure it is ready and proceed with the other steps.
Just before the meat is completely fried, add garlic, black pepper and rosemary. I stir for a while to feel each of the aromas.
I add the wine. It simmers for about 10 minutes.
Add olives and artichokes. At your discretion, add hot water to the desired consistency – like a stew. I leave the dish on the hob for another 10 minutes. I do not overdo with boiling of the artichoke (especially if it is canned) because it quickly tends to get mushy.
Some minutes before taking the stew out of the hob, add parsley.
If you add more water and the dish is not as think as you want, then you can thicken it with 4-5 tbsps corn starch, dissolved in a little cold water (the quantity of starch is quite indicative and depends on the amount of water contained in the stew, start with less and if necessary, dissolve more). This mixture is added in a thin stream while constantly stirring (finally, when the dish is ready). It quickly thickens in seconds. However, the better option is not to add too much water at first to save this operation (or to minimize it).
To thicken stews, you can usually use flour instead of starch. Once it is dissolved in cold water, it is good to strain it through a strainer to make sure there are no pats.
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