Lamb Stew with Turkish Flavors


2 lbs lamb shoulder, cut into 3/4-in chunks
2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 medium onions, thinly sliced
6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1/4 Cup Red-Wine vinegar (like Pinot Noir Red Wine Vinegar)
7 Cups reduced-sodium chicken stock or broth
1 (15-to 19-oz) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1/4 Cup apricot preserves or minced dried Turkish apricots
2 tsp Ground Coriander
2 tsp Ground Cumin
1 tsp Ground Cinnamon
1 tsp Maras Chile plus more for sprinkling
1 tsp Urfa Chile plus more for sprinkling
1-1/2 lb boiling potatoes (about 4 medium)
1/4 Cup dried currants
1/4 Cup chopped oregano
1-1/2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice, or to taste

serve with rice


Pat lamb chunks dry, and season with 1 tsp salt and 3/4 tsp pepper. Heat oil over medium heat, in a wide 5-to 6-quart heavy pan or dutch oven, until the surface of the oil shimmers.

Divide lamb pieces into about three batches, and brown on all sides, until golden-brown, 4 to 5 min per batch, transferring to a plate with a slotted spoon.

Add onions to the pan and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden-brown, about 8 min. Add garlic and saute, stirring, 1 minute. Stir in vinegar and cook, scraping up brown delicious “meaty bits”, until the vinegar has evaporated, 1 to 2 min.

Return browned lamb chunks with meat juices to pot. Stir in stock, chickpeas, dried apricots or preserves, and spices (including Maras and Urfa peppers) and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, for about 1 hour.

Meanwhile, peel potatoes and cut into 1/2-in pieces. Add potato chunks to the stew (after 1 hr) and continue to simmer, uncovered, until both potatoes and lamb are tender, about 30 min more. Remove stew from heat and stir in currants, oregano, and lemon juice. Season with salt.

Serve lamb stew over rice, with additional Maras and Urfa pepper for guests to season as desired.