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Scottish Stovies With Lamb

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Published: 17 Jan 2013      

This hearty dish of lean lamb layered with delicious root vegetables and baked in a covered casserole is perfect for busy lives. Once assembled, it can simply be left to cook and won't be spoilt if left in the oven a little longer.


Serves: 4

450g               lean boneless lamb (such as leg), trimmed of excess fat

1 tbsp             vegetable oil

750g               floury potatoes (such as King Edwards), peeled

350g               turnips or swede, peeled

2 large            leeks, trimmed

2 tsp               chopped fresh thyme or ½ tsp dried

2 tbsp             chopped fresh parsley

1                    bay leaf

900ml             lamb or vegetable stock, hot


Prep: 20 mins            Cook: 2 hours


  1. Preheat the oven to 150°C/gas 2.
  2. Cut the lamb into 3cm chunks.
  3. Heat the oil in a large flameproof casserole, with a capacity of at least 2 litres, over a moderate heat.
  4. Fry the lamb in batches until it is browned on all sides.
  5.  Remove using a draining spoon and set aside.
  6. Cut the potatoes, turnips and leeks into slices about 4mm thick.
  7.  Place a generous layer of potato slices over the base of the casserole, then top with a layer of turnip slices, followed by half the leeks.
  8. Lightly season between the layers with a little salt and freshly ground black pepper and scatter with the thyme and half the parsley.
  9. Place the lamb on top of the leeks, tucking in the bay leaf.
  10. Top with the remaining leeks, followed by the rest of the turnip slices.
  11.  Finish with the remaining potato slices, arranging them so that they overlap slightly.
  12. Pour over the stock (don't worry if it doesn't completely cover the vegetables as they will cook in the steam).
  13. Cover with a tight-fitting lid and bake for 2 hours or until the meat and vegetables are tender and cooked.


Just before serving, sprinkle the top with the remaining chopped parsley.


Use sliced carrots or swede instead of the turnip, if preferred.


For a vegetarian dish, use 350g mushrooms and 1 finely chopped fennel bulb and cook them with the rest of the vegetables for about 15 minutes. Omit the meat and use vegetable stock. Add 2 tbsp tomato purée, simmer for 30 minutes, then add 200g shredded spinach and 2 x 400g cans of chickpeas. Stir for 1–2 minutes until the spinach has wilted, then layer with the pasta and bake.