Not your Irish grandmother's stew, this version was inspired by ingredients commonly used in the south of France: figs, green olives and herbes de Provence. To shorten the cooking time, we use ground lamb instead of lamb stew meat. Serve with toasted focaccia and a tossed salad.

EatingWell Test Kitchen
Source: EatingWell Magazine, November/December 2008


Recipe Summary

45 mins


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Heat a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add lamb and cook, breaking up with a wooden spoon, until browned, 4 to 6 minutes. Transfer to a sieve set over a bowl to drain; discard the fat.

  • Wipe out the pan; add oil and heat over medium-high heat. Add 1/4 cup garlic and herbes de Provence and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add wine and cook, scraping up any browned bits, until slightly reduced, 1 to 2 minutes.

  • Combine broth and cornstarch in a small bowl. Add to the pan, increase the heat to high and bring to a simmer, stirring constantly. Add tomatoes, figs, olives and pepper; return to a simmer, stirring often. Reduce heat to maintain a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Add the reserved lamb and cook, stirring occasionally, until heated through, about 2 minutes.

  • Combine the remaining 2 teaspoons garlic, parsley and lemon zest in a small bowl. Serve the stew topped with the parsley mixture.

  • Serves Two Variation: Halve all the ingredients except the cornstarch. Prepare the recipe in a large saucepan instead of a Dutch oven and use 2 teaspoons cornstarch (instead of 2 ablespoons) in Step 3 to thicken the stew.


Kitchen tip: It's not always easy to find lean lamb, but it's easy to grind your own. Choose a lean cut, such as leg or loin, trim any excess fat and cut into 3/4-inch pieces. Pulse in a food processor until uniformly ground, being careful not to overprocess. Or ask your butcher to grind a lean cut for you.

Ingredient note: Herbes de Provence is a blend of aromatic herbs including thyme, rosemary, oregano, marjoram and sometimes lavender and/or aniseed. To make your own, mix equal amounts dried thyme, rosemary, oregano, marjoram and savory in a small jar. If desired, add a pinch of dried lavender and crushed aniseed.

Nutrition Facts

317 calories; protein 27g 54% DV; carbohydrates 24.6g 8% DV; exchange other carbs 1.5; dietary fiber 3.1g 12% DV; sugars 11.8g; fat 10.1g 16% DV; saturated fat 2.2g 11% DV; cholesterol 76.9mg 26% DV; vitamin a iu 837IU 17% DV; vitamin c 18.1mg 30% DV; folate 43.5mcg 11% DV; calcium 70.7mg 7% DV; iron 3.2mg 18% DV; magnesium 58.5mg 21% DV; potassium 815.7mg 23% DV; sodium 708.8mg 28% DV; thiamin 0.2mg 22% DV.

Reviews (2)

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2 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 2
  • 4 star values: 0
  • 3 star values: 0
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Rating: 5 stars
great with some additions this was absolutley delicious on a rainy cold night. i added potatoes carrots and celery and served it with challah bread Pros: easy to make Read More
Rating: 5 stars
This was great. I did change it a bit by adding a little bit of red pepper flakes for a bite and I probably doubled the olives cause I wanted to finish the jar. Also green beans and spinach were on sale so I added them in too making it more of a one pot meal and eliminating the need for a side salad. Next time because there will be a next time I'll do the same. Read More