Poached lamb with parsley sauce and a potato and celeriac puree
I like to serve this lamb with a vegetable puree, perhaps jerusalem artichoke, or a combination of potato and celeriac, or sliced onions cooked slowly in butter until soft and then pureed with a little cream. A spoonful of bright-green parsley and garlic puree is a delicious garnish and the dish seems to need something piquant like a sprinkling of capers, a few sliced black olives, or a scattering of lemon, garlic and parsley.
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- For the lamb
- 2 back straps of lamb
- 1 litre veal or lamb stock
- 12 baby carrots
- For the celeriac and potato puree:
- 4 medium potatoes
- 1 celeriac
- 1 cup milk
- 2 tbsp butter
- 2 tbsp cream
- For the parsley sauce
- 4 cloves garlic, unpeeled
- 1 cup cream
- half-bunch parsley
- 2 tbsp small capers
For the celeriac and potato puree
Peel potatoes and boil until tender in lightly salted water. Peel celeriac thickly and cook until tender in half milk, half water (be careful it does not boil over). Once potatoes are tender press through a potato ricer into a large bowl. Once celeriac is tender lift the pieces from the milk-water mixture and press through the ricer into the potato bowl. Beat well together, adding a little of the hot milk-water to the puree and taste for salt and pepper. For the best texture, press this mixture through a coarse sieve. Now beat in the cream and the butter. Keep warm until needed. (Reheat the puree in the microwave or steamed in a bowl over hot water.)
For the parsley sauce
Place garlic cloves in a pot of cold water, bring slowly to the boil. Pour away water and repeat twice more. Now slip garlic cloves out of their skins, return to the pot and cook gently in the cream until the garlic is soft. Set aside until needed.
Pick the leaves from the parsley until you have a good cupful. Drop the leaves into boiling water for 30 seconds and then scoop directly from the water into a blender. Add the garlic-cream mixture and blend for quite a few minutes until the sauce is a brilliant emerald green. Taste for seasoning. This sauce also can be reheated as above.
To cook lamb
Preheat oven to 100 degrees. Bring stock to simmering point in a pot just large enough to hold the lamb. Slip in the pieces of lamb (that have been brought to room temperature). Time for five minutes. Remove lamb to a warm dish to rest for at least five minutes.
Reheat the sauce and puree and steam-cook the baby carrots.
Place a serve of puree on the plate. Slice lamb thinly on the diagonal and add the carrots and a ring of parsley sauce. Scatter with flakes of sea salt, grind over some pepper and strew over some capers.