Lamb Stew with Spinach and Garbanzo Beans
This lamb stew is rich in colorful vegetables and legumes that provide plentiful fiber and “plant protectors” – antioxidant and anti-inflammatory phytochemicals. The fiber not only promotes the growth of “friendly” gut bacteria for a healthy gut microbiome, but also supports regular bowel movements. While lamb is a “red meat” with saturated fat, this recipe uses lamb more as a flavoring agent than a main ingredient. Each serving contains only an ounce of cooked lamb, so the saturated fat content is very low. Sheep (lamb) are also “grass-finished,” which means that sheep are pasture-raised (fed on grass until slaughter). Sheep do not tolerate the feedlot chow mixtures of corn and soy that are fed to cattle (beef) to fatten them for market. I enjoy lamb as an occasional treat, especially when my local farmer’s market has lamb for sale from local organic farms. I like to serve this stew over a small portion (about ½ cup) of cooked Basmati or black/Imperial rice for a nourishing gluten-free meal.
- 1 tablespoons olive oil
- 8 oz ground lamb
- ½ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp pepper
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1 onion, coarsely chopped
- 2 cups sweet potatoes, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch pieces chunks
- 1 15-ounce can garbanzo beans (chickpeas), drained, rinsed
- 1/2 cup canned chicken broth
- 1 15-oz can tomato sauce
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 10-ounce package ready-to-use spinach leaves
- Lemon wedges
Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium heat. Add ground lamb, and sprinkle it with salt, pepper, and minced garlic. Sauté until lightly brown, about 5 minutes. (To lower saturated fat, you can drain fat at this point and add another tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil).
Then add the chopped onions and sweet potatoes, and sauté until beginning to brown (about 5 minutes). Add the garbanzo beans, broth, tomato sauce, and lemon juice and bring to simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover the pot and simmer gently for about 5-10 min. Then add the spinach. Cover and cook until spinach wilts (about 5-8 minutes), stirring occasionally to make sure the stew doesn’t burn. Season stew with additional salt and pepper, if desired. Serve with lemon wedges and steamed rice.
Makes about 6 servings – Each serving of stew provides about 270 calories, 13g protein, 12g fat (4g sat), 28 mg cholesterol, 28g carbohydrates (7g sugar, 6g fiber), 65 mg calcium, 55 mg magnesium, 755 mg sodium, and 710 mg potassium.