Saturday, October 3, 2009

Green Bean Bredie (Lamb and Green Bean Stew)


All this week I've been featuring South African recipes that my friends and I enjoyed during our South African wine dinner. It's been a great opportunity to learn about a new culture and cuisine. I've learned how the diverse population of one's surroundings can influence how people eat, taking from the tastes of other countries. This is true in South Africa where the flavors of India, Holland, Indonesia, England and many others can be found in South African fare.

This is the last recipe to share from our South African wine dinner and was prepared by my friends, Frances and Tom. They made Green Bean Bredie, a green bean and lamb stew. Bredie is the Afrikaan word for stew and just as you'd expect, it's chock full of various vegetables, bite sized pieces of meat and a flavorful sauce. This stew isn't like what you'd expect in American cuisine because the sauce is not quite as thick. The sauce is fairly thin and the dish is meant to be eaten over rice. I really enjoyed this dish as it felt like comfort food (then again, anything served over rice is comfort food to me!). If you're looking for something different for a stew this fall, I definitely recommend this dish...

Green Bean Bredie (Green Bean & Lamb Stew)

2 tablespoons oil
1-1/2 pounds lamb, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 cup coarsely chopped onions
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger root
1/2 cup water
1 pound fresh green beans, trimmed, cut into 1" lengths
2 medium potatoes, peeled, cut into 1/2" dice
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh hot chile peppers
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon salt
Pepper to taste


In a large skillet heat the oil over moderate heat. Add the lamb and brown it in batches. Transfer pieces to a plate.

Add the onions, garlic, and ginger, and cook over low heat. Return the meat to the skillet. Cover tightly, and simmer for 30 minutes over the lowest heat. Stir in the water, green beans, potatoes, chile peppers, thyme, salt, and pepper, and bring to a boil. Cover again, reduce heat, and simmer for about 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Taste for seasoning and serve immediately with rice.