Lamb Shank with Courgette & Figs

Ingredients

2 lamb shanks, about 340g each

2 tbsp olive oil

6 shallots, quartered

3 garlic cloves, chopped

2 fresh sprigs of rosemary

1 bay leaf

500g tomatoes, skinned and quartered

300g dried green lentils

850ml lamb or vegetable stock, or as needed

2 tbsp pomegranate molasses

1 tbsp runny honey

8 dried figs, quartered

2 courgettes, thickly sliced

chopped fresh coriander, to garnish

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 220°C/gas 7. When the oven is hot enough, put the lamb shanks in a roasting tin and roast for 25 minutes until they are a rich brown colour on the outside. Drain on kitchen paper. Reduce the oven to 160°C/gas 3.

2. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large flameproof casserole over a medium heat. Add the shallots and cook for 5 minutes, stirring until lightly browned. Stir in the garlic, rosemary, bay leaf and tomatoes and cook for 1 minute. Stir in the lentils, then add the lamb shanks, pushing them down into the vegetable mixture.

3. Stir the pomegranate molasses and honey into the stock, then pour over the lamb. Slowly bring to the boil, then cover the casserole with a tight-fitting lid and cook in the oven for 45 minutes.

4. Remove the casserole from the oven, add a little more stock if needed and stir in the figs and courgettes (this is easier if you lift out the lamb shanks first, then return them after stirring). Cover and cook in the oven for a further 45 minutes or until the lamb is very tender. Lift out the lamb and carve the meat from the 2 shanks. Discard the bones and return the lean meat to the casserole. Gently stir through, then serve scattered with chopped coriander.

Lamb Rump with New Potatoes & Asparagus

Ingredients

1 lean lamb rump portion (weighing 225-375g/8-12oz)

salt and freshly milled black pepper

5ml/1tsp dried oregano

400g/10oz baby new potatoes, thinly sliced

45ml/3tbsp rapeseed or olive oil

½ bunch fresh asparagus, trimmed and halved lengthways

for the mint dressing

1 large handful fresh mint

juice of 1 lemon

100ml yoghurt

Method

1. Preheat the oven to Gas mark 6, 200°C, 400°F.

2. Season the steaks and dust with the oregano on both sides.

3. Put the potatoes in a shallow baking tray and coat in the oil, shake well and cook in the oven for 20 minutes.

4. Remove the tray from the oven, scatter over the asparagus, position the lamb on top of the potatoes and cook for 15-20 minutes, turning once.

5. Fry or grill the steaks 6-8 minutes on each side

6. To prepare the dressing; in a small bowl mix the ingredients together.

7. Arrange the potatoes, asparagus and lamb on a serving board, drizzle over the dressing and serve immediately.

Lamb Cutlets with Crushed Chilli and Garlic

Ingredients

12 lamb cutlets, trimmed

2 tsp extra virgin olive oil

sea salt, to taste

lemon wedges, to serve

steamed seasonal greens, to serve

For the sauce

6 large ripe tomatoes

3 large garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced

4 small fresh red chillies, seeded and chopped

60ml extra virgin olive oil

½ tsp sea salt

1 large handful flat-leaf parsley leaves, finely chopped

Method

1. To make the sauce, score the base of each tomato and blanch in a saucepan of boiling water for 30-60 seconds. Remove with a slotted spoon and plunge into ice cold water. Peel away the skins, cut the tomatoes into quarters and scrape out the seeds, then roughly chop the flesh.

2. In a large heavy-based frying pan, combine the tomatoes, garlic, chilli, 60ml olive oil, sea salt and 900ml water. Bring to the boil, then reduce to a gentle simmer, cover and cook for 45 minutes. Remove the lid, increase the heat to high and cook until the liquid has thickened and reduced to about 300ml (20-30 minutes).

3. Meanwhile, heat a charcoal grill or gas barbecue to hot. Drizzle the lamb cutlets with 2 tsp extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt. Place on the grill and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side, then remove and rest for 5 minutes. I like the cutlets charred on the outside but medium rare inside. If you prefer them well done, cook them for longer – just watch how hot the grill is.

4. Spoon the sauce onto four plates, and place three cutlets on each plate. Serve with a wedge of lemon and steamed greens.

Lamb Shoulder Curry

(the fastest lamb curry recipe known to man or beast!)

Ingredients

300g lamb steak or lean shoulder, chopped

1/4 tsp curry powder

1/4 tsp turmeric

1/4 tsp cumin seeds

salt and freshly ground black pepper

1tbsp oil

1-2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1/2 onion, finely chopped

1/2 red pepper, finely chopped (optional)

2 tbsp thick set greek style natural yoghurt

3 large handfuls fresh spinach or 100g frozen peas (optional)

Method

1. Place the lamb, curry powder, turmeric and cumin seeds into a bowl and mix together to coat. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

2. Heat the olive oil in a deep pan and add the coated lamb. Cook for two minutes, or until brown on all sides.

3. Add the garlic, onion, pepper ( if using) to the pan and fry for 3-4 minutes. Then add the yoghurt and simmer for 5-6 minutes or until cooked through.

4. Add the spinach to the pan and simmer for one minute.

5. Ladle the curry into a bowl.

6. Serve with basmati rice