Sunday 31 March 2013

Herby Baked Lamb in Tomato Sauce Recipe

As it's Easter Sunday and a roast lamb is traditional, here is a Mediterranean-inspired dish that will allow you to serve something a little different for today's roast.

The shoulder of lamb is very flavoursome, but it needs long cooking to get the most of the meat and the flavour. In this recipe, the lamb is cooked in a sauce so that the flavours impregnates the meat and the meat falls off the bone. This makes an excellent substitute for traditional roast lamb at Easter (or any time of year) and the sauce means that whilst cooking the meat essentially looks after itself, giving you the time to prepare other dishes. The recipe given here is derived from, and loosely based on, a classic Cypriot lamb stifado.

Herby Baked Lamb in Tomato Sauce

Serves: 4
Herby baked lamb in tomato sauce: Easter recipe for a shoulder of lamb roasted in a herbed tomato sauce base until very tender.


1.8kg (4 lb) shoulder of lamb
2 tbsp olive oil
3 fresh oregano sprigs (strip the leaves from 2)
3 fresh rosemary sprigs, (strip the leaves from 2)
3 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
600ml (2 3/4 cups) red wine
2 x 400g (14 oz) tins of chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp caster sugar
salt and freshly-ground black pepper, to taste


Sit the lamb in a large oven-proof dish. Combine the oil, oregano leaves, rosemary leaves, garlic and seasonings in a food processor. Pulse to chop then use this mixture to rub all over the lamb. Transfer to an oven pre-heated to 200ºC (400ºF, Gas Mark 7) and roast for 20 minutes. 

Cover the lamb, return to the oven and reduce the heat to 130ºC (25ºF, Gas Mark 2) and roast for 3 hours more.

At this point, remove the meat from the oven and spoon off the fat (but keep any meat juices in the pan). Add the wine, tomatoes and the remaining herbs then return to the oven and cook, uncovered, for 40 minutes more.

Carefully transfer the lamb to a warmed plate, cover with kitchen foil and set aside to rest.

In the meantime, bring the sauce to a simmer and cook for about 12 minutes, or until thickened. Season with the sugar and salt and freshly-ground black pepper, to taste.

Return the lamb to the pan and serve immediately.

This would work well with the Pommes Anna (Anna Potatoes) recipe published yesterday, or with either the Lentil and Rice Casserole or Lemony Potato, Broccoli and Goat's Cheese Salad as accompaniments.

Serve with the Fennel with Tomatoes and White Wine recipe which appears later today.

If you enjoyed this recipe, then you can find traditional Cypriot recipes on the Celtnet recipes from Cyprus page.

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