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Barboton D’Agneau (Lamb Stew)

Serves 4 to 6


  • 3 pounds boneless lamb shoulder, trimmed of fat, cut into 2-inch chunks
  • flour for dusting
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 large onions, 1 pound total, cut into 1/2-inch wedges
  • 2 leeks, 1/2 pound total, including white and pale green parts only, rinsed, cut into 1/2-inch slices
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup dry white wine, preferably Chardonnay
  • 3 pounds Yukon Gold or other yellow-fleshed potatoes, peeled and quartered, or cut into 1-inch cubes. (Reserve in cold water)
  • 6 to 8 cups unsalted chicken stock or water
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme, preferably wild
  • 2 sprigs winter savory
  • Leaves from 2 sprigs flat-leaf parsley, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • fleur de sel, for finishing


Preheat oven to 350°F. Place in oven rack in the center of the oven.

  1. Lightly dust the lamb with the flour and season with salt and black pepper.
  2. In an enameled cast iron Dutch oven or a heavy oven proof casserole, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter over medium-high heat. Add the lamb and brown for 6 to 10 minutes.
  3. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and sweat the onions, leeks and garlic along with the browned meat over medium heat until the vegetables are translucent, 8 to 10 minutes. Make sure they do not color.
  4. Add the wine and cook to reduce the liquid by three-fourths.
  5. Add the potatoes and stock or water, making sure that the lamb and vegetables are covered by 1 to 2 inches of liquid.
  6. Add the thyme, savory, and bay leaf and stir well to incorporate.
  7. Cover the pot loosely with a lid or with an oiled or buttered round of parchment paper pricked with a tiny air hole in the center. Return liquid to a boil and transfer the pot to the oven.
  8. Bake the stew until the lamb is very tender and the potatoes are soft and have begun to break up, so that the thicken the sauce—1 1/2 to 2 hours; cook for up to 30 minutes longer, if necessary.
  9. Discard the parchment, if used, and add the thyme, savory, and bay leaf.

Ladle the stew into shallow-rim soup bowls and sprinkle with parsley just before serving. Serve with pepper and fleur de sel on the side.

Hudson Valley Restaurant Week is back this April 8-21!