Friday, June 4, 2010

Lamb Braised in Rice Milk with Anise

Lamb Braised in Rice Milk with Anise

Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Yeast-Free, Soy-Free, Corn-Free, Peanut-Free

This is excellent served over rice, or mashed potatoes. The rice milk makes it taste slightly sweet, so the kids like it too.

4 tbsp olive oil
2 1/2 pounds of boneless lamb, trimmed of fat and cut into bite size pieces
Freshly ground sea salt and pepper

1 anise bulb, diced (also called fennel)
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tsp fennel seeds, crushed
2 1/2 cups of rice milk
1 sprig of rosemary

2 tbsp brown rice syrup
3 tbsp arrowroot powder
1/3 cup cold water
Freshly ground sea salt and pepper
1/2 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped

Optional: 2 cups of rice or 4 medium potatoes (to serve 4 adults)

In a large dutch oven (5 to 6 quarts), heat 2 tbsp of olive oil on medium to medium-high heat. Pat the lamb pieces dry (so they will not spit when put in oil) and season well with freshly ground sea salt and pepper. Place 1/3 of the lamb pieces in the pan so that each has a surface touching the bottom. Brown each side of the lamb pieces before turning it (don't stir it or it will not brown). Remove the lamb from the pan once all sides are brown and set it aside. Repeat this process for the remaining lamb pieces.

Reduce the heat to medium and add the remaining 2 tbsp of olive oil. Scrape up the brown tasty bits and use this and the oil to cook the anise. Add the diced anise and cook until softened (a few minutes). Add the garlic, and crushed fennel seeds and cook another minute or two.

Add the lamb back to the pot and add the rice milk. Increase heat until the broth simmers then turn it to low. Add the sprig of rosemary, cover the pot and let it cook for 1 and 1/2 to 2 hours, and the meat is tender.

While the lamb is cooking, prepare the rice or mashed potatoes to serve with it.

When the lamb is tender, remove it from the pot and set aside. Remove the rosemary sprig and discard. Add the brown rice syrup and bring the rice-milk based sauce to a boil and reduce it to about 2 cups (about 5 minutes). To thicken the sauce, add three tablespoons of arrowroot powder to 1/3 cup of cold water. When the arrowroot powder is dissolved in the water, add it to the sauce while stirring it the entire time. When the sauce starts to thicken remove from heat. Season the sauce with freshly ground pepper and sea salt to taste. Add back the lamb and heat it through.

Just before serving, stir in the fresh chopped parsley. Serve the lamb and sauce over hot rice or mashed potatoes.

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