Thursday, April 16, 2009

CEiMB - Lamb-less Stew with Orange

In the interest of full disclosure, I was going to sit this one out. I had a shellfish reaction last Thursday followed immediately by a very bad epinephrine reaction. It must have walloped my immune system because the cold I had rapidly turned into bronchitis. I've missed three days of work, and I rarely take sick days. So I felt like I had a pretty good reason for skipping CEiMB (although I skipped last week, the salmon was in the fridge but I was just worn out after spending the afternoon and evening in urgent care and the ER). I'm not a lamb fan, but I planned to make the stew with chicken and maybe give it a tagine spin. Until I didn't get better.

With the bronchitis hanging on longer than I'd like, I have plenty of time to visit other blogs. I was checking out my fellow CEiMB bloggers, and MacDuff at Lonely Sidecar just knocked me over with her post. First of all, she's channeling the movie Moonstruck, and that had me in stitches. Then, she 86's the lamb and makes this into minestrone. I may feel wretched, but surely I can make a pot of soup. So I did.

The soup had to be made with what I had in the house, so I skipped the parsnips and mint. I started by sauteing the onion, garlic, carrot and celery in olive oil. Then I added salt, pepper, tomato paste, chickpeas, 4 cups of chicken broth and the orange zest. I also threw in a can of Ro-Tel tomatoes and about 1/2 teaspoon of smoked Spanish paprika. I supremed the orange since I thought orange segments wouldn't integrate into the dish as well. I skipped the cumin as I thought it would overpower the flavor of the orange (but I think it would be great with lamb). At the end, when it was bubbling away, I added Swiss chard from last week's CSA box and let the heat of the soup cook it.

This was FANTASTIC, and I totally thank MacDuff for the inspiration. It was spicy and fragrant with the orange zest. The only thing I might change next time would be to add half a vanilla bean to the stock and let it add its flowery notes to the soup. Otherwise, it was just what I needed to perk up my taste buds.

This week's recipe was selected by Farah of Confessions of a Novice Baker. Farah blogs from Singapore and is always cooking up yummy things that make me wish I was in her neighborhood. Check out what the other Craving Ellie in My Belly bloggers did here. I bet you'll see a lot of lamb, from people who, uh, know how to follow directions. Unlike me.

Lamb-less Stew with Orange (inspired by MacDuff at Lonely Sidecar, who started with Ellie Krieger's lamb stew recipe)
2 T olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 large carrots, sliced
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 large cloves of garlic, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
4 cups chicken broth
3 T tomato paste
1/2 t smoked Spanish paprika
zest of one orange (I used a Microplane)
segments from the same orange (I cut them into supremes)
1 15.5 ounce can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 can Ro-Tel tomatoes
1 bunch Swiss chard

Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or large skillet. Add the chopped onions saute for about 5 minutes, until softened. Add the garlic, celery and carrots. Stir and allow to saute for a few minutes. Zest the orange with the Microplane and add to the pot, along with the rest of the ingredients, reserving the Swiss chard. Taste for seasoning, chop the Swiss chard and add it to the piot. Turn off the heat and let the soup cook the chard. Ladle into bowls and serve with a crusty loaf of sourdough.


Jen said...

Your "stew" looks great! Hope you feel better soon!

Jessica said...

Wonderful stew and who knew such a simple pesto pasta dish would be such a hit!

Anonymous said...

I hope your stew helps you to feel better. It does sound delicious.

Craving Ellie in My Belly said...

That sounds like the perfect thing for a sicky. I hope you are feeling better soon!

Jessica said...

Oh, that looks wonderful. I hope that you're feeling better soon!

Pamela said...

It looks wonderful! I hope you are feeling 100% soon!

Anonymous said...

Looks wonderful. I'm glad you made it your own. I hope you're feeling better!

Cakelaw said...

This looks so good! That deep orange colour is vappealing.ery

farah said...

Wow, its great that you made this, it looks and sounds delicious! I really hope you're feeling better soon :)
Thanks for cooking alongside with me.

Teanna DiMicco said...

WOW! That sounded like it must have been so trying! I can't believe you made the stew! But I am glad you did, because it looks gorgeous! And I am glad you loved it!

n.o.e said...

Way to take this one and turn it into something amazing - and something that the doctor would have ordered too!

Well, now that I've left half a billion comments for you, I think I'm pretty much caught up!! I'm so glad I checked out what you've been cooking; it's all right up my alley.