Irish stew or ‘stobhach gaelach ‘ is a traditional Irish dish made from lamb or mutton with potatoes, onions, and parsley. Many cooks also add carrots and barley to the pot. Another version of Irish stew uses beef instead of mutton. Stew originated in Ireland but appears in cookbooks all over the world.
Irish Stew is a simple dish, full of flavour and goodness and made with readily-available ingredients. Irish farmers raised mainly sheep and root crops such as potatoes for subsistence. Potatoes were the main food crop in Ireland for centuries up to the potato Irish Famine. (Potatoes are sometimes boiled separately and added to the pot before serving, as they can have a tendency to break down faster than the other ingredients.)
When the Irish people began immigrating to the four corners of the earth they naturally brought along their food traditions. Irish stew evolved and was adapted to include the local offerings of the country they settled in. Sheep were not as plentiful, so other types of meat were often substituted. When made in the traditional manner, the result is very thick and hearty, not thin like soup. The recipe has evolved to often include Guinness stout and Paprika. Some variations have exalted this original peasant dish to near gourmet status.
* 2 1/2 lb boned mutton * 4 large potatoes * 2 large onions * 3 or 4 medium carrots * spring of parsley * 2 cups water
* salt and pepper
Cut the meat and the peeled vegetables into large sized chunks and chop the parsley. Choose a pot with a lid and put in the ingredients. Add the cold water and season to taste. Cover and put on a low heat for about two and half hours until the meat is tender and the potatoes have thickened the liquid. Lamb can be used instead of mutton, in which case it requires only one and half hours to cook.
See the full list of traditonal Irish Recipes