Sunday, January 6

Peposo: Peppered Lamb Stew, Slow Cooked in a Wood Oven


A proper Sunday night stew, rich peppery Peposo. An Italian dish, peposo translates to "peppered" and can be made with any type of tough-cut meat with a bone. In this recipe we use leg of lamb cut into thick steaks but you could also use pork shoulder, beef or venison.  It's really all about low and slow. Jason says "I like to cook this dish the night after pizza night (or when the wood burning oven has been used). I wait until the oven cools down putting the pot in and piling all the ash up and around it. It will softly cook all night long and the next morning it's ready to go!" 

You don't need a wood burning oven to make this dish. Simply put it in a slow oven at about 225 F or 105 C for about 8 hours or so - until the meat falls off the bone.

  Perfect served piled high on a buschetta or over soft polenta or mashed potates on a cold winters night - really stick to your ribs!!


Peposo
Peppered Lamb Stew

2 kilo/4.5 lb leg of lamb, cut into thick steaks with bone-in
20 garlic cloves, peeled
4 heaping tablespoons freshly ground black pepper
sea salt
5 sprigs of fresh rosemary
1 bottle of red wine
2 bay leaves
3-4 juniper berries, crushed
drizzle of olive oil

Preheat the oven to 225 F or 105 C  degrees.

In a heavy pot (just big enough to hold all the ingredients), drizzle olive oil and place a layer of the sliced meat at the bottom of the pan. Cover with a few cloves of garlic, sprinkle with pepper & salt and rosemary. Repeat starting with the meat & keep layering until they are all used up & the pot is almost full.

Pour wine over the top and add bay leaves & juniper. Top off with a touch of water if necessary to cover everything.

Slowly bring to just to boil, cover tightly with lid & place in the preheated oven for about 8 hours or until tender & falling apart. [If you want to cook the stew faster, raise the temp to about 300 degrees and cook for 4-6 hours. However it will be richer the slower you cook it. ]

Once the stew is done, skim off fat from the surface & remove the bones, the bay leaves & rosemary twigs.  The meat should be super soft & juicy with a rich & powerful flavor. Taste & season if it needs it. Breakup the pieces of meat. Serve a ladleful of stew on toasted bruschetta & a drizzle of olive oil or serve with polenta or mashed potatoes.
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