Preparation: Preheat your oven to 160°C (320°F). Rub the lamb shoulder with olive oil, salt, and pepper. If you like, insert slivers of garlic and sprigs of rosemary into small incisions in the meat.
Roasting: Place the seasoned lamb shoulder into a roasting tray and cover with aluminium foil. Roast for about 4-5 hours, depending on the size of the cut. The meat should become tender enough to pull apart easily.
Finishing: For a crispy exterior, remove the foil and increase the oven temperature to 220°C (430°F). Roast for an additional 20-30 minutes.
Preparation: Season the lamb shoulder as above and sear all sides in a hot pan to lock in the flavours.
Braising: Transfer the lamb into a casserole and add a braising liquid like red wine, beef stock, or a mixture of both. Throw in some aromatic vegetables like onions, carrots, and celery. Cover and cook at 160°C (320°F) for about 4 hours.
Finishing: Remove the lid and cook for an additional 30 minutes to reduce the liquid and caramelise the meat's exterior.
Preparation: Season and sear the lamb shoulder as per the earlier methods.
Pressure Cooking: Place the lamb shoulder into the pressure cooker along with your choice of liquid and aromatics. Seal the pressure cooker and cook on high pressure for about 1.5 hours.
Finishing: Release the pressure according to the manufacturer's instructions and serve.
Here's a list of some options that complement the rich, earthy flavour of lamb:
Roasted Root Vegetables: Carrots, parsnips, and beetroots bring a natural sweetness that balances the rich meat.
Minted Peas: The freshness of mint cuts through the fatty richness of the lamb.
Grilled Asparagus: Adds a smoky yet fresh element.
Dauphinoise Potatoes: Creamy and indulgent, these potatoes feel right at home next to lamb.
Couscous: Especially good if you've seasoned your lamb with Middle Eastern or North African spices.
Polenta: For a more rustic feel, a creamy polenta can absorb the meat juices wonderfully.
Mint Sauce or Jelly: A British classic that elevates lamb to new heights.
Red Wine Jus: Adds depth and a touch of elegance.
Tzatziki: For a lighter, fresher contrast.
Baklava: If you’re leaning towards a Middle Eastern spiced lamb, continue the theme with a honey and nut baklava.
Eton Mess: A light and fruity dessert can offer a sweet and refreshing contrast to a rich meal.
Here are some stellar accompaniments that will lift your lamb dish:
Rosemary: An iconic pairing, the piney, woody aroma complements the lamb’s flavour beautifully.
Mint: Fresh or in the form of a sauce, mint is a classic British accompaniment to lamb.
Thyme: Its subtle earthiness works well with the natural richness of lamb.
Garlic: A few cloves of garlic, whole, minced, or even as a paste, can add depth and zest.
Cumin: Provides a warm and slightly nutty undertone.
Paprika: For a subtle kick and a beautiful colour.
Apricots: Whether dried or in the form of a glaze, apricots offer a fruity contrast.
Lemon: Lemon zest or a squeeze of fresh lemon juice can cut through the richness of the meat.
Pomegranate: As seeds or molasses, pomegranate can offer a tart, fruity balance.
Onions: Caramelised or roasted, onions add sweetness and complexity.
Fennel: Provides a licorice-like note and crispy texture when roasted.
Tomatoes: Fresh, sun-dried, or as a sauce, tomatoes add acidity and sweetness.
Yoghurt: Useful as a marinade or in sauces like tzatziki.
Feta Cheese: Crumbled over the top or as part of a side dish, the saltiness of feta complements lamb well.
Pine Nuts: Toasted and sprinkled over, they add crunch and nuttiness.
Sesame Seeds: Especially if you’re going for an Asian or Middle Eastern theme.
Olive Oil: Ideal for marinades or drizzling over before roasting.
Balsamic Reduction: A drizzle can add a sweet and tangy element.
Harissa: For those who enjoy a bit of heat.
Bone-in lamb shoulder
Fresh herbs like rosemary and thyme
Salt and pepper
Additional seasonings like mustard, paprika, or cumin, as per taste
Carving: Make sure to carve against the grain for the most tender eating experience.
Presentation: Consider garnishing with fresh herbs or lemon wedges for visual appeal and a burst of fresh flavour.