Lamb Casserole with Pumpkin and Ginger

This is a mildly aromatic casserole with a delicious pale orange sauce; simply made but sophisticated. Serve with baked or new potatoes and a green vegetable.

Ingredients

  • 900 g/2 lb piece pumpkin
  • 5 cm/2 in piece fresh ginger
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 675 g/ lb lamb fillet
  • 75 g/3 oz butter
  • 2 teaspoons caraway seeds
  • 150 ml/¼ pint cider
  • 1 rounded teaspoon dried green peppercorns
  • 150 ml/¼ pint double cream or crème fraîche
  • handful fresh coriander leaves
  • sea salt
  • black pepper

Method

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas mark 4. Scrape out the seeds from the pumpkin, remove the peel and cut the flesh into small pieces. Peel the ginger and garlic and cut both into small, thin slices. Slice the lamb fillet crossways at roughly 4cm/1½in intervals. Melt the butter in a heatproof casserole over a medium heat, add the ginger, garlic and caraway seeds, stir around once and then add the pumpkin, lamb, cider, green peppercorns and a sprinkling of salt. Stir with a wooden spoon to mix, then cover the casserole.

Move the casserole into the oven and cook for 1¼ hours. Then stir with a wooden spoon to break up the pumpkin until it becomes a purée. Cover again and return to the oven for another half an hour. Taste the pumpkin and add salt and a little black pepper if needed. Just before serving, pour the cream over the top and sprinkle with very roughly chopped coriander leaves.

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