Easter is nearly here and clocks are soon going back, giving us one more hour of light in the evening and making the Spring season officially start. After a long winter spent cooking ossobuco and pasta & fagioli, it is time for my DishNextDoor offering to finally change and after a week of researching on recipes that could easily be cooked, kept warm and served over a stretch of a couple of hours, I am happy to announce that marinated slow cooked shoulder of lamb will be in my new Spring menu.
The recipe will be simple and seasonal, bound to change according to what’s fresh. Many ingredients are from my lovely local Food Assembly, including the meat and salad.
This time I made the marinade with fresh wild garlic leaves, finely chopped and added to yogurt, lemon juice and olive oil. A sprinkle of sumac powder and crushed cumin, coriander and shelled hemp seeds gave an unmistakeable Middle Eastern flavour. For serving, I made a seasonal salad of local rocket, mustard leaves, pomegranate seeds, pine nuts and sunflower seeds, garnished with more olive oil and a squeeze of lemon juice and zest.
I hope you enjoy it.
For the lamb
250g plain yogurt
25g wild garlic leaves
the juice of one lemon
a glug of olive oil
1 heaped tsp sumac powder
1 heaped tsp cumin, crushed
1 heaped tsp coriander seeds, crushed
1 tsp sea salt flakes
1 tbsp shelled hemp seeds
1/2 shoulder of lamb, about 1kg in weight
1 large leek (onions will also work), finely chopped
A squeeze of runny honey
For the salad
100g mustard leaves coarsely chopped
100g rocket, coarsely chopped
the seeds of 1/2 pomegranate
1 tbsp pine nuts, dry roasted
1 tbsp sunflower seeds, dry roasted
a glug of olive oil
The juice and zest of 1/2 lemon
Put the yogurt in a medium sized bowl and stir in the wild garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, spices and seeds. Use the mixture to cover your lamb shoulder. Place it in a covered container and let it marinade in the fridge overnight.
Turn your oven on to 150C.
In a cast iron pot with a lid add the leeks and sprinkle them with the honey. Pour the marinade on it and mix. Place the meat on top. The leeks will soften up with the fat from the lamb shoulder and the honey will balance the slight acidity from the yogurt and lemon.
Cook your meat for about 1 and a half hours.
During the last 20 minutes, heat up a frying pan and dry roast your pine nuts and sunflower seeds. Chop the salad and shake the pomegranate seeds off one half of the fruit. Assemble your salad and garnish with olive oil. Add the lemon juice and zest just before serving.
Finely slice the lamb around the shoulder bone and plate up next to a spoonful of the leek sauce and plenty of salad. Enjoy!
Health score: 7