For the lamb stew
- 750g/1lb 10oz lamb neck fillet, cut into 2.5cm/1in cubes
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 25g/1oz plain flour
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 50g/2oz butter
- 12 baby onions, peeled
- 2 medium carrots, cut into large dice
- 1 medium swede, cut into large dice
- 50ml/2fl oz white wine
- 2 sprigs rosemary
- 4 bay leaves
- 1.25 litres/2 pints lamb stock
- 3 tbsp flatleaf parsley, roughly chopped
For the dumplings
- 125g/4½ oz plain flour
- 65g/2½ oz suet
- ½ tsp baking powder
- pinch salt
- 1 tbsp rosemary, finely chopped
- 500ml/18fl oz lamb stock
Preheat the oven to 120C/250F/Gas ½.
Season the lamb and dust with the flour. Palce a heavy-bottom casserole dish over a medium heat, add the olive oil and butter then the lamb. Fry until golden-brown. Remove the lamb and keep to one side.
Reduce the heat and fry the onions, carrots and swede until caramelised. Add the wine and simmer until the volume of liquid has reduced by half, then add the lamb back in with the lamb stock. Bring the stew to a simmer then add the bay leaf and rosemary. Cover with a lid, transfer the pan to the oven and bake for one hour.
For the dumplings, mix the flour, suet, baking powder and a pinch of salt in a bowl. Add the rosemary then gradually stir in 3–5 tablespoons of cold water, or enough to form a sticky dough. Flour your hands and then roll the dough into 12 small balls. Place on a plate in the fridge to chill.
When the lamb stew is ready, place the dumplings on the top of the stew and put the lid back on. Return the stew to the oven for 10 minutes or until the dumplings are fluffy and cooked through. (Alternatively, if you are short of space in your casserole dish, place 500ml/18fl oz lamb stock into a separate pan and bring to a simmer. Add the dumplings and simmer for 6–8 minutes. Discard the stock when the dumplings are cooked and set them aside to rest for a minute.)
Add the parsley to the stew and serve equally between four shallow bowls with the dumplings.