This simple Irish Stew hails from the northern province of Ulster. Made with mutton, onions and potatoes it has a real rustic heart-warming nature. Serve the stew with a traditional, creamy mashed side dish in Ireland called Champ.
Ulster Irish Stew Recipe
It is optional to thicken the Irish Stew, some people prefer it thickened, others prefer it thinner.
- 1Kg mutton steaks (or lamb)
- 1 pig’s kidney (fresh and firm)
- 150g streaky bacon (diced)
- 1.4 Kg potatoes
- 6ooml beef stock
- 4 carrots (sliced)
- 500g onions (sliced fine)
- 1 tbsp chopped thyme
- 1 tbsp chopped parsley
to thicken the stew
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 tbsp plain flour
Wash the meat in cold water and remove all the skin and extra fat. Cut this into large diced bite-sized pieces. Skin the kidney, slice it in half, trim out any hard white areas and dice the rest. Dice the streaky bacon.
In a tall, large saucepan fry off and brown the diced mutton and the diced streaky bacon – do this in batches – once browned add all the meat back in and add the diced kidney and cover this with water and bring it up to the boil. Add plenty of salt and pepper. Simmer and skim off the fat and any scum as it rises.
Peel and slice the onions (finely), carrots and potatoes (medium thick). Add half the potatoes to the stew, and all the onions and carrots. Stir them in with the chopped herbs. Then cover the top of the stew with the remaining potatoes in a layer. Add the beef stock (and any extra water if needed) to cover and simmer for 2 and a 1/2 hours – tightly cover the saucepan with a lid and foil.
In a small saucepan melt the butter, then add the flour and cook out for 2 minutes on a medium heat, stirring all the time. With half an hour to go stir 1 tablespoon of this into the stew to thicken. Once thickened and cooked out taste and adjust the seasoning then serve the stew with champ.