Slow-cooked goat stew
18 October 2018
At this year’s Aldeburgh Food Festival, one of the more interesting supplies I managed to get hold of was some diced goat meat. I’d eaten goat just the once - a rather extraordinarily expensive meal I had once in Dubai having gone to speak at some conference or another. I’d never cooked with it before.
Some are calling goat the new - more sustainable - lamb. It’s one of those highly adaptable animals that can eat most things and has a relatively low environmental impact - and since there’s a lot of dairy goats in the UK with demand rising, that means there’s a surplus of male kids that can be raised for meat.
Of course, all of this is context specific. Goat meat is more sustainable than lamb because there is very low demand. If that demand was kicked up to the same quantities because it became hugely fashionable, scale would bring its own unintended consequences. These equations are rarely straight-forward.
This is definitely a stewing meat - goat, not kid. I decided that, rather than going for the obvious goat curry, I would do something with more of a tomato base - although I still wanted a bit of a chilli kick. Cook the meat long and slow. The flavour has an element of lamb, but milder. Certainly not ‘goaty’ as you might think.
In any case, the outcome, served with some rice, was a definite success. But let’s face it, this isn’t hard.
Slow-cooked goat stew
450g cubed goat meat
2 cloves garlic
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
Few sprigs rosemary, leaves picked and chopped
1 x 400g tin tomatoes
2 tablespoons tomato purée
250ml chicken stock
1 pinch Chilli flakes
1 glass red wine
Salt and pepper
200g basmati rice
Add two tablespoons of the oil to a large frying pan and heat over a high heat. Add the goat meat in batches and brown the meat on all sides for a few minutes. Reserve.
Peel and finely chop the onion and the garlic. Heat the remaining oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat and add the onions and fry for 5 minutes until soft but not coloured. Add the garlic, rosemary and the chilli flakes and cook for another couple of minutes.
Deglaze the pan with the red wine and boil until nearly completely evaporated. Add the goat meat, tomatoes, tomato purée and the chicken stock. Bring to the boil and lightly season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Reduce the heat, cover the pan and leave it to simmer very gently for two and a half hours.
Cook the rice in salted water according to the packet instructions. Divide the rice between the bowls, top with the goat chilli and serve.
Adapt the quantities above to fit the quantity of goat meat you have, and freeze any surplus (unless you have a great idea already what to do with any leftover meat).
If you buy a packet of stock, you’ll probably have surplus. If so, freeze it in ice cube trays and then add to meals as and when you need it.
If you’ve opened a bottle of wine to use for this, you’ll have more than two-thirds of it left. I can’t think of a single thing you might do with that.