Welcome to Mise en Place, a journey of culinary delight where anything can happen. Based on the Colorado Department of Agriculture’s list of food by month, KRCC takes a look at farmers, chefs, and fodder, all with a Centennial State bent.

Each month, the state’s agriculture department highlights a commodity and provides a recipe using that product. We take it a step further.

John Socolofsky never thought he’d be raising all-natural lamb…and though the Socolofskys primarily work with pigs, they eventually found Colorado to be a prime place for the sheepish variety. I spoke with John at the Socolofsky Farm in Larkspur, and also visited Jake & Telly’s Greek Taverna in Colorado Springs, where owner Jake Topakas and chef Ruth Henson cooked up a rustic lamb dish.

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Listen as Ruth Henson and Jake Topakas talk about making kapama, and see photos of John Socolofsky’s ewes and the cooking of kapama.

Click below for the Lamb Kapama recipe from Iakovos “Jake” Topakas and Ruth Henson of Jake and Telly’s Greek Taverna, and for a Caribbean Lamb Stew from the Colorado Department of Agriculture.

Lamb Kapama
Iakovos “Jake” Topakas, owner of Jake and Telly’s
Ruth Henson, Chef de Cuisine

Serves about 6-8

3 lbs. trimmed lamb top round, diced into 1/2 inch cubes
1 cup vegetable oil
2 cups seasoned flour
1 cup diced onions
1 cup red wine
1 T. cinnamon
1/2 T. all spice
1 t. salt
1 t. black pepper
1 t. nutmeg
1/2 t. cayenne pepper
6 cups canned, diced tomatoes
2 cups water
2 lbs. cooked orzo

Dredge diced lamb in seasoned flour and fry in heated, oiled pan. Cook lamb until all sides are golden brown. Drain off excess grease, and place lamb in oven safe casserole dish or pan. Sautee onions in same pan, without cleaning first. When onions are translucent, add all spices and deglaze with red wine. Cook for three minutes, then add to lamb dish. Add diced tomatoes and water, cover with foil. Cook at 350 for 3.5 hours. Serve on top of cooked orzo and garnish with a rosemary sprig.

Recipe from the Colorado Department of Agriculture

Caribbean Lamb Stew
Chef Jason K. Morse, C.E.C., Valley Country Club, Aurora, Colo.

1 Tbsp. Olive Oil
1-1/2 Lbs. Lamb Loin, trimmed of excess fat, diced large
1 Red Onion, diced medium
1 Zucchini, diced medium
1 Yellow Squash, diced medium
1 Tbsp. Jerk Paste
4 Cloves Fresh Garlic, chopped
1 Tsp. Dried Oregano
1 Tsp. Dried Mint
1 Tsp. Ground Garam Masala
1/4 Tsp. Ground Allspice
2 Cups No Salt Chicken Broth
1-1/2 14oz. Can Diced Tomato, pureed
2 Cups Garbanzo Beans, cooked (1 cup pureed, 1 cup whole)
1/2 Tsp. Ground Black Pepper
2 Cups Cous Cous, cooked in no salt chicken broth
3 Tbsp. Fresh Cilantro, chopped, no stem

Heat large sauté pan, add olive oil and bring back to temperature. Add lamb meat in batches and brown, remove and repeat until all lamb is browned. Add onions and repeat the same process as above. Add the zucchini and yellow squash and repeat the same process as above. Add the jerk seasoning, garlic, and spices and sauté. Deglaze with 1/2 of chicken broth. Add back the lamb, vegetables and all spices. Add the tomato puree and puree of garbanzo beans and stir well, then add the whole garbanzo beans. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and add the black pepper. Finish with 1 serving of cous cous per bowl and garnish with chopped cilantro.


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