Slow cooked Lamb Shoulder Weber
The acid in the red wine vinegar tenderises the meat and combined with the long slow roasting time turns it into the most incredible melt in the mouth experience. I find that eating this dish makes me want to channel my inner cave woman, leather loin-cloth and all. (I once went to a party as one, I have pictures to prove it.) There’s something positively primal about standing over the pan picking the flesh apart and dipping it into the fat before eating it (I highly recommend this). I don’t do this very often, but it’s something I enjoy when I do. Or perhaps this is an endeavour that is just plain uncivilised, something that the ancient Greeks wouldn’t have approved of in the least. But then again, who cares? They’re not around to see, so go ahead, do it anyway.
- Serves 6-8. Prep time: 20 mins. Cooking time: 9 hours (plus marinating time).
- 2 kilo (approxinately 4.5 pounds) lamb shoulder, bone-in.
- Spice rub:
- 3 whole dried bay leaves
- 1 tablespoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon dried wild oregano (available at Greek and European deli’s, please use this rather than ordinary dried oregano as the flavour is superior)
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
- 1/4 teaspoon black peppercorns
- salt to taste
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons macadamia oil *
- drizzle of olive oil at the end of cooking time
Adapted from tanyazouev.com
1. Wash the lamb shoulder and pat dry with kitchen towel. Make deep slashes about one inch in several areas over the joint so that you can rub the marinade into the meat. Place the lamb into a non-reactive casserole, ideally an enamelled cast iron pan.
2. In a spice grinder, grind the bay leaves, garlic powder, wild oregano, thyme, fennel seeds and black peppercorns until everything is a fine powder. Combine this with the red wine vinegar and macadamia oil.
3. Salt the lamb well, then pour the marinade over the meat, making sure you rub the marinade into the slashes. Cover the casserole in a sheet of foil, then place the lid over it tightly.
4. Leave the lamb shoulder in the marinade in the fridge overnight.
5. The next day preheat the oven to 125˚C (approximately 250˚F). Cook the lamb for 8 hours covered in the casserole pan, then remove the lid and foil. Turn the oven up to 200˚C (approximately 390˚F) and cook the lamb for a further 60 minutes, basting every 15 minutes. This will reduce the juices and caramelise the meat.