Lamb Stew with Parsley Root

This simple stew recipe comes from an old family cookbook from Basel. The city’s cuisine reflects its place in the Rhineland rather than Switzerland, and similar recipes are found in neighboring Freiburg and Alsace. Basel in the 18th and early 19th centuries was quite poor, and its traditional dishes reflect this provincial character. Lamb is a cheaper cut of meat, and parsley root is a flavorful but common vegetable in the region. This dish would have graced the table of the city’s middle class.

Lamb Stew with Parsley Root

This simple Basel stew relies entirely on the flavors of its two ingredients, lamb and parsely root. For those looking to enhance the stew, you can sear the meat first and deglaze the pan with a bit of finely diced onion. Otherwise this is an endearing recipe from the tables of 18th century Basel.
Prep Time20 minutes
Cook Time1 hour
Total Time1 hour 20 minutes
Course: Main
Cuisine: Basel, Swiss
Keyword: Lamb, Slow Cooked, Stew, Vegetable
Servings: 4


  • 500 g Parsley Root
  • 1.5 kg Lamb Shoulder
  • 25 g Flour
  • 33 g Butter
  • Salt
  • Freshly Ground Pepper
  • Cream
  • Fresh Parsley


  • Preheat the oven to 180°C
  • Bring one cup of water, white wine, or broth to a boil in an oven-safe casserole or roasting pan.
  • Cut the lamb shoulder into cubes. Note that lamb can be quite boney. When choosing your cut, get some with more meat than bone, and have the butcher cut the meat for you. You can then add the meat and bone to the boiling water.
  • Cover the casserole pan with a lid and put it in the oven.
  • Peel the Parsley root and slice it into 1cm thick roundels.
  • After 20 minutes, add the parsley root to the casserole, add as much pepper as you want, and return to the oven.
  • Let the stew cook for another 30 minutes with the lid, then remove the lid for the final 10 minutes.
  • In the meantime, mix and knead the flour and butter together to form a crumbly dough. This will be used to thicken the stew.
  • When the stew is finished, remove from the oven and remove the meat and vegetables. You can use a slotted spoon or strain the broth into the casserole.
  • Bring the broth to a boil on the stove, add the flour-butter dough until the sauce is the desired consistency, and then return the meat and vegetables to the broth.
  • Serve and garnish with cream and freshly chopped parsley

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