Lamb Shoulder Mafe with Fonio
An African lamb shoulder dish from Chef Pierre Thiam
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time2 hrs
- 1 large onion finely chopped
- 1 garlic cloves crushed
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 6 cups chicken stock or water
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 sprigs thyme leaves removed and chopped
- 1 cup unsweetened smooth peanut butter
- 6 to 8 okra trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces (optional)
- 1 Scotch bonnet pepper left whole
- 2 tablespoons Vietnamese fish sauce optional
- Cooked Fonio recipe follows
- 1 bunch parsley leaves finely chopped
- 3 scallions finely chopped
- ½ of 1 Scotch bonnet pepper seeded and finely chopped
- Zest of 1 lemon finely grated
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Combine the parsley, scallions, Scotch bonnet and lemon zest in a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste, cover and refrigerate until it’s time to serve
Cut lamb shoulder into approximate 1 inch chunks.
Heat the oil in a heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Season the lamb chunks with 1 tablespoon of salt, and brown in batches until all the meat is browned. Set aside the meat, and pour off excess fat, leaving about 1 tablespoon in the pot.
Add onion, using a wooden spoon to scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan, and cook until it turns translucent. Reduce heat to low, then add garlic, and stir well. Cook for a minute or 2, until it is fragrant, then add tomato paste, and cook for 7 more minutes, until the paste is dark in color. If the mixture begins to brown too quickly, lower the heat, and add a splash of water to deglaze the pan.
Add stock to cover meat and bring to a simmer then add the Scotch bonnet, fish sauce, bay leaves, thyme and remaining salt. Slowly add the peanut butter 1 to 2 tablespoons at a time, stirring constantly to dissolve it in the liquid. Return the meat to the pot, Cover and cook for 2 hours on low heat or until the meat is very tender.
Add okra and cook another 10 minutes (optional).
Pile bowls with fonio, top with lamb and generously sprinkle over the parsley.