This is a wonderful winter dish which has been in our family for yonks and has already become so popular that dining guests often ask for the recipe after sharing it with us for the first time.
Like most honest winter dishes this one-pot creation is easy to make, doesn’t require fancy ingredients and tastes even better the second time round.
We serve it with chunks of crunchy bread or Basmati rice, but usually with both and it really is a better belly-warmer than the best hot water bottle, particularly if you help it on its way with a couple of glasses of good old red wine.
In our household there is a constant debate about which meat is best for a stew. My wife Penny loves beef. I love lamb and usually lose the battle, except for this lamb and quince stew which she never mutters about.
This stew is best prepared the night before and left to mature for serving the following evening. Like all stews and bredies it takes patience because the meat must be cooked until it’s as soft as butter.
We are very lucky to have superb Karoo lamb so freely available in the Cape so buy the best quality you can find for this dish. Your family and friends will love you for it.
What is particularly appealing about this dish is the combination of spices and herbs with the lamb and quince because it conjures up images of Morocco, delightfully foreign enough to make it stand out from other stews.
It’s simple to make — all you need is:
1.5kg leg of lamb, cubed
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 large onions, chopped
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon ginger powder or 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
½ teaspoon saffron
1 teaspoon ground coriander seeds
4 cinnamon sticks
1 cup coarsely chopped fresh coriander leaves (dhania)
3 tablespoons butter
4 large quinces, peeled, cored and quartered
150g dried apricots (use the softer, slightly more expensive version – they taste better!)
Brown the lamb chunks in olive oil.
Remove lamb from pan and place in a solid-based saucepan and add cayenne pepper, ginger, saffron, ground coriander, cinnamon, one of the chopped onions and most of the fresh coriander leaves, keeping some to add as garnish just before serving.
Cover with water, bring to the boil, reduce to a gentle simmer and cook until lamb is tender (about 90 minutes).
While the lamb is cooking fry the second chopped onion and the quince pieces in the butter over low heat until golden brown.
Add this mixture to the lamb after it has been cooking for about an hour and stir through gently.
Serve the bredie with couscous and sprinkle with fresh coriander leaves.
Ridgeback 2006 - Agter Paarl – R100.00
The wine has an attractive spicy nose with cherry and dark plum flavours with elegant tannins on the finish.
To order, email Wine Concepts