Capretto e Carciofi all’Uova e Limone

Kid and Artichokes with Egg and Lemon

Egg-and-lemon-enriched sauces appear throughout Italian cuisine and are most likely of Sephardic origin. These bagna brusca dishes are reminiscent of the well-known Greek avgolemono. This recipe from Calabria uses kid (baby goat), as does capretto alla giudia from Rome. Spezzatino d’agnello con salsa di uova per Pasqua and agnello brodettato, Passover recipes of Lazio and Tuscany respectively, are practically identical to this recipe as well except for their use of lamb. In non-Jewish versions, lard or prosciutto fat is used instead of olive oil. The artichokes can be cooked separately and added during the last 10 minutes. Peas may also be added, as well as favas and asparagus. You can also make this stew with chicken.

Ingredients

  • ½ cup olive oil, or as needed
  • pounds kid or lamb, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour (optional)
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 lemon, plus juice of 2 large lemons (about ½ cup)
  • 6 small artichokes
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh marjoram or mint

Method

Warm the olive oil in a large saucepan or wide sauté pan over high heat. Add the kid or lamb, onion, and half of the parsley, and sauté until the lamb is golden, 8 to 10 minutes. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and the flour and mix well. Add the wine and bring to a boil. Cook over high heat for about 5 minutes, then cover, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 35 to 40 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare the artichokes: Fill a large bowl with water, cut the lemon in half, and squeeze the juice into the water. Working with 1 artichoke at a time, remove all the tough outer leaves until you reach the pale green heart. Pare away the dark green area from the base and any tender stem. Cut the artichoke in half lengthwise and scoop out and discard the choke from each half. Cut each half in half again lengthwise and drop into the lemon water.

When the meat has simmered for about 40 minutes, drain the artichokes, add them to the pot, re-cover, and continue to simmer until the meat and artichokes are tender, about 25 minutes longer. Taste and adjust the seasonings.

In a bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, lemon juice, the remaining 2 tablespoons parsley, and the marjoram or mint until foamy. Remove the stew from the heat and beat in the egg-lemon mixture, stirring constantly. Recover the pan and let stand off the heat until the eggs thicken the sauce, about 3 minutes. Serve at once.