Recipe by Arlo Communal
300g bone out lamb shoulder
2 celery sticks
2 anchovy filets
1 tsp tomato paste
3 fresh bay leaves
2 rosemary sprigs
100g white wine
4 tbsp sherry vinegar
Chicken stock to cover
Salt and pepper to taste
3 whole eggs
100g panko breadcrumbs
1L Canola/Vegetable Oil
Cut lamb into 4cm cubes and season with salt and olive oil. In a ripping hot pan, sear lamb on all sides until golden brown. Make sure not to overcrowd your pan - this searing process may take two or three sears. Once seared, place lamb into your braising pot. Into your searing pan pour your white wine and sherry vinegar and reduce, making sure to scrape any ‘fond’ off the bottom of the pan (this is where the flavour lies). Place the liquid into the braising pot with your lamb.
Next, chop your vegetables into ½ cm cubes (this is called a mirepoix). Then cook out the mirepoix and anchovies until sweet and slightly golden in the same pan you used to sear the lamb. When the vegetables are nearly done, add your tomato paste and cook until it's dark red. Once finished, season lightly with salt and pepper and place the vegetables with the lamb and wine into the braising pot.
Finally, place in the herbs and cover the ragu with chicken stock. Give the ingredients a mix and season again lightly with salt and pepper, making sure not to season too heavily as salinity will increase as the braise reduces. Bring the ragu to the boil then reduce the heat to low and braise for a minimum of 4 hours.
Once finished, make sure to taste for salt, pepper and vinegar. The ragu should be meaty, well rounded (sweet, background acid and seasoned appropriately with salt and pepper) and the lamb should be tender and delicious.
Take out bay leaves, pour into a container and refrigerate overnight.
The following day, discard the fat from the top of the ragu. Next, shape the ragu into 3/4cm balls (or whatever shape your heart desires) and place onto a sheet pan. Place flour, whisked eggs and breadcrumbs into three separate bowls, making sure that they are in that order. Roll the balls in the flour, shaking off the excess, then dunking the balls in the eggs, making sure the eggs cover the entirety of the ball, then finally rolling the balls in the panko breadcrumbs. Repeat this process for the remaining ragu.
Heat your oil in a large dutch oven over the stove to approx 180*C. You can test the readiness of the oil by dropping a flicker of panko into the oil - if it fizzes, the oil is ready. Once ready, using a spider or a slotted spoon, carefully place the croquette into the hot oil. Fry until golden brown (2-3 mins) and place the finished croquette onto a wire rack to drain the excess oil. Season the top with flaked salt. Serve with aioli or leek vinaigrette (or whatever desired dipping sauce).
About Arlo Communal
Arlo is an exercise in intimate and dynamic communal dining based in Sydney, Australia.
Arlo is shaped by a love for design, music, and good food. Three mates - Cal, Tobi and Miles, serve up seasonal, satisfying and expressive food alongside organic, biodynamic, and sustainable wines for our guests.