On a cold Sydney evening, I can think of nothing more heart warming than this old family recipe, a rich wholesome pot of vegetables with the addition of smoked lamb ribs. This recipe, like all soups, are so much more enjoyable the following day and the days after. Not only does the soup thicken, but the flavours have more time to infuse and create a richer, fuller soup. The wonderful thing about a pot of soup, is you can add almost any vegetable, any legume and any meat to the pot, creating your very own pot of soup.
If you can't source smoked lamb rib, you could use any sausage and or meat and bones. We suggest the cheaper cuts of meat like brisket or shoulder, as they require long slow cooking for a delicious tender result. Now this is the secret to our Smoked Lamb Rib Soup.... browning the meat and bones with the onions, prior to adding any of the vegetables and liquid. Roasting the bones and meat in the saucepan first, provides the basis for an incredible rich meat stock, caramelising the natural flavours of the meat and the bones. No oil is required if your meat is smoked, as the natural fats provide the non stick surface.
Smoked Lamb Rib Soup
2 tablespoons olive oil, if not using smoked meat
1 x rack smoked lamb rib, cut into small pieces
2 onion, peeled and diced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
4 potatoes, peeled and chopped
2 kumera, peeled and chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
2 celery sticks, chopped
1 cup barley
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Heat deep saucepan and add smoked lamb rib pieces with the onion and garlic.
Sauté on a low temperature for 15 minutes until onions are soft and bones are roasted and dark golden.
Add potatoes, kumera, carrots, celery, barley and season well.
Cover with water, bring to the boil then reduce to simmer 1 hour.