Lamb

Roast Lamb & Cider served with Flageolet Beans (serves 6) 

Cider with lamb may sound like a strange combination, but believe me it works beautifully and is absolutely made for these more autumnal days. Like all of the recipes I share, this is very easy to cook – making it possible to cook midweek if you fancy. This recipe is taken from ‘Pure, Simple, Cooking’ by Diana Henry (yes, her again!); she recommends that this dish is served with flageolet or cannellini beans (recipe here) – and of course she is absolutely right!

1 Leg of lamb (approx. 1.8kg -2kg), trimmed of excess fat

2 large cloves garlic, cut into slivers

2-3 sprigs thyme

50g unsalted butter, softened

250ml dry cider

A good slug of calvados or brandy

570ml chicken or lamb stock

175ml crème frâiche or double cream

Sea salt and black pepper

  1. Make small incisions all over the leg and stuff with a slivers of garlic and a little thyme. Rub the butter all over, stuffing some down the incisions as you do so, season generously.
  2. Place in a preheated oven, 220’c, roast for 15 minutes then turn down the heat to 200’c, and continue to roast for another 45 -50mins.
  3. Remove the lamb to rest in a warm place covered with foil for about 15 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile pour the cooking juices into a jug and skim off the fat and discard.
  5. Set the roasting tin over a medium heat, add the cider and calvados, boil to reduce by two-thirds. Then add the stock and the reserved cooking juices, reduce this  by two-thirds, then add the crème frâiche (or cream). Boil until slightly syrupy.
  6. Serve the lamb, sliced, with the sauce in a warm gravy boat and the flageolet beans on the side (recipe below).

Lamb Biryani (Serves 4)

This is a lovely ‘one pot’ recipe, great for using up leftovers – you could make it with other roast meats such as chicken, beef or pork. It’s definitely a recipe that you will want to make again and again, an easy Monday option!

200g basmati rice

1 tablespoon olive oil

2cm piece ginger, finely chopped

3 cloves garlic, chopped

1 onion, chopped

3 handfuls baby spinach leaves, roughly chopped

1 teaspoon curry powder

1 tablespoon plain flour (gluten free if required)

2 tablespoons mango chutney

200g leftover roast lamb, or whatever you have left (see note above)

1 cup lamb or chicken  stock

50g almond flakes

50g butter, melted

Sea salt and black pepper

Greek natural yogurt to serve

Fresh coriander, chopped, to serve

  1. Cooke the basmati rice according to the instructions on the packet, and set aside.
  2. Place the oil, ginger, garlic and onion in an ovenproof dish and cook over a medium heat for 10 minutes.
  3. Add the spinach and cook for a further 5 minutes.
  4. Add the curry powder, flour, chutney, and the chopped lamb, season with salt and pepper then stir well. Pour in the lamb stock. Top with the reserved, cooked rice, sprinkle with the almonds and drizzle with the melted butter. Cover with a lid (or tin foil) and place in a preheated oven, 200’c.
  5. After 20 minutes remove the lid and continue to cook for a further 20 minutes.
  6. Serve topped with the yogurt and the chopped coriander.

Lamb Chops & Parsley Butter served on a Bed of Watercress with New Potatoes (Serves 4)

Despite the simplicity of this recipe it has lots of flavour. The watercress is an excellent accompaniment to the lamb and the parsley butter with its touch of lemon juice enhances the flavours superbly. A real midweek treat! You won’t use all the butter but it is great to have in the freezer – ready to slice and add to steamed potatoes on any occasion. This recipe calls for curly parsley rather than flat leaf, simply as it adds a little more texture and has a milder flavour, but you can use either type.

400g new potatoes

8 lamb chops

A little olive oil

100g butter, softened and cubed

A bunch of curly parsley, chopped (see note above)

Juice of ½ lemon

200g watercress, trimmed

Sea salt and black pepper

  1. First make the parsley butter. Place the butter in a bowl with the chopped parsley, lemon juice and seasoning, mix well. Spoon on to a sheet of cling film and roll into a log shape, place in the freezer, wrapped in the clingfilm. Do not wash up the bowl that you used for mixing the butter – you can use it to season the steamed potatoes when serving!
  2. Steam the potatoes for 20 minutes or so until cooked.
  3. Meanwhile place the watercress on your plates.
  4. Season the lamb chops and brush with a little olive oil, fry on a griddle pan (or in a normal frying pan) for about 2½-3 minutes each side so that they are still pink in the middle. Place the chops on the plates, on top of the watercress.
  5. Now take your reserved ‘butter bowl’ and place the cooked potatoes in it, mix them around so that they get a good coating of the leftover butter, then place them on the plates.
  6. Finally cut four slices from the parsley butter and place on top of the chops.

Pomegranate & Honey Glazed Chops with a Radish and Cucumber Tzatziki (Serves 4)

This recipe is from Diana Henry’s cookbook ‘Pure, Simple Cooking’, it is one of those cookbooks which I find myself going back to again and again, it has lots of really simple yet stunning recipes. This recipe has the flavours of Greece, it is a perfect summer dish, and if the UK weather permits, even better al fresco! I like to serve it with white long grain rice. Make sure you allow time to marinate the chops, anything from 1-24 hours – but the longer the tastier!..

8 thick lamb chops (chump chops)

Olive oil

Sea salt and black pepper

Marinade:

2½ tablespoons pomegranate molasses

8 tablespoons olive oil

1½ tablespoons honey

2 cloves garlic, crushed

2 teaspoons cayenne pepper

Radish and Cucumber Tzatziki

200g radishes, finely sliced

½ cucumber, cut into small cubes

300g plain Greek-style yogurt

1 clove garlic, crushed

2 tablespoons mint, coarsely chopped

2 tablespoons olive oil

Sea salt and black pepper

To serve:

Large bunch of coriander, leaves picked

Olive oil

1 lemon

3 tablespoons of fresh pomegranate seeds

  1. Mix the marinade ingredients together, coat the chops generously and leave to marinate, refrigerated, for 1 to 24 hours.
  2. To make the Tzatziki simply mix the radishes, cucumber, yogurt and garlic together, then stir through the mint leaves and olive oil.
  3. Heat a little olive oil in a frying pan, cook the chops for about 3 minutes on each side, do not have the heat up too high otherwise you will burn the honey and pomegranate mixture.
  4. Serve the chops on a bed of the coriander leaves, dressed with a little olive oil, a squeeze of lemon juice and the tzatziki on the side, sprinkle over pomegranate seeds. Serve with rice.

Lamb Chops with Shallot Chutney (Serves 4)

This recipe is best cooked on a griddle pan, but you can use a regular frying pan. The tangy chutney really makes this dinner extra special. This recipe is from Marcus Wareing’s book ‘Marcus at Home’, despite being a michelin starred, super chef, his recipes in this book (as the name suggests), are mostly straightforward and of course tasty! I like to serve this dish with tarragon green beans (courtesy of ‘Leiths How to Cook’ book), as I think that they work particularly well with the chutney, you can find the recipe for these on my Recipes Pages.

8 lamb loin chops

olive oil

sea salt and black pepper

For The Shallot Chutney…

3 large echalion shallots, chopped

200ml malt vinegar, plus 1 tablespoon

50g capers

30g caster sugar

2 teaspoons nigella seeds(optional)

  1. To make the shallot chutney, put the shallots, 200ml vinegar, capers, caster sugar, nigella seeds (optional) and 75ml of water in a saucepan. Bring to the boil and reduce until there is no liquid remaining. Finally stir in the remaining 1 tablespoon of vinegar.
  2. Heat the griddle pan (or frying pan) until very hot. Brush the lamb chops with oil and season with salt and pepper. First place the chops in the pan on their fat-side, lean them against each other for support. Cook for 4-5 minutes until the fat renders and becomes crisp.
  3. Lay the chops on their sides and cook 3-5 minutes on each side, basting with the rendered fat. Remove and allow to rest for 5 minutes.
  4. Serve with the tarragon green beans, some buttered new potatoes and drizzle the shallot chutney over the top.