This was an absolute winner!
I’m quite a fan of lamb breast, a very underused and under rated cut of meat.
I think a lot of people are put off by the appearance (there appears to be very little meat) and they don’t know how to cook it.
I normally roll it with a nice stuffing to soak up the juices and make it go a bit further.
On this occasion I remembered seeing a recipe where the breast was cooked without being rolled so that it went nice and crispy, so I thought I’d give it a go with a nice spicy coating.
‘Ome Made Spicy Crispy Lamb Breast.
We were not disappointed! I used three lamb breasts which did me, Kit and the four hungry Kids and then there was some leftover for lunches.
It does reheat really well and goes even crispier!
The recipe below is for one lamb breast so double it for two or treble for three… There’s nothing like stating the obvious is there, sorry!
Lamb breast needs to be cooked slow to render the fat down and give you tender meat so this was cooked in two stages the first with the marinated meat cooked in a low oven, wrapped in tinfoil. The oven temperature was then turned up and the lamb finished off uncovered.
Before you cook the lamb breast you need to remove the thin bit of film that covers the inside of the ribs as it tends to be a bit tough. If your not confident about doing this ask the butcher to do it.
Talking of ribs the breast can be cooked with or without them.
Our Kids love the ribs when they are removed after the meat is cooked!
As far as flavourings you could use any mixture you like. I stuck with cumin, which goes fabulously with lamb, chilli and garlic as the main focus.
Of course you could use a ready bought mixture from the shop such as Ras el Hanout or of course any of the ‘Ome Made seasonings and rubs!
Spicy Crispy Lamb Breast
1 Lamb breast
splash of lemon juice
2 cloves of garlic crushed
2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon chilli powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
lots of ground black pepper
A little oil of your choosing
Prepare the lamb breast removing the film and any big lumps of fat. lightly score the meat (SEVERRRN!… Sorry!) and any fat to help the marinade penetrate the lamb. Splash a little lemon juice over the lamb and rub in. Put the crushed garlic, spices and seasoning in a bowl and add enough oil to make a paste. Cover the Lamb Breast with the paste and give it a good rub in. leave to marinate in the fridge for up to 24 hours if you have the time, however the meat can be cooked straight away and still taste good! When ready to cook wrap the lamb breast in a couple pieces of tin foil and place in a roasting dish. Place in a preheated oven at 145°C/125°C Fan for around 3 hours.
After this time the meat should be cooked and tender and the soft fat will have rendered down giving incredibly moist, tasty lamb.
Turn your oven up to 200°C/180°C Fan.
Remove the lamb from the tin foil and place on a wire rack (if possible, will be fine if not) in a roasting pan.
Once the oven has come up to temperature put the meat back in. After 15 minutes turn the meat over and leave for another 10 – 15 minutes or until you have a nice crispy finish to your lamb.
Remove from the oven and let rest for 15- 20 minutes before slicing into strips to serve.
We served the crispy strips of lamb breast with some mashed potato and garlicky sautéed cabbage… Winner!
Sometimes, not very often but sometimes we have a meal which is quite simple and not spicy. Well, not that spicy!
Shepherds pie is one of those dishes. We don’t have it that often at all, so when we do it’s a real treat.
It’s one of those really comforting foods. Perfect for when the weather turns a bit cooler… like it did… in August!
Oh and it has to be lamb. None of this using minced beef and passing it off as shepherds pie, that’s Cottage Pie!
This recipe is a very basic recipe for Shepherds Pie. Proper Shepherds Pie. Like your Mum used to make but better! Not curried Keema Shepherds pie. Not Clapshot Pie and not Shepherds pie where you’ve ponced about slow roasting a leg of lamb, used the juices to make the gravy and with anchovies in etc. Plain and simple Shepherds Pie.
This recipe will give six to eight portions so you could halve it if you don’t want to make so much. Or why not get some foil containers so you can do some individual portions which can be put in the freezer for another day.
1.2 Kilo minced lamb
2 medium onions diced
4 cloves garlic finely chopped
4 medium sized carrots diced
1/2 teaspoon chilli powder
1/2 teaspoon of ground ginger
1 tablespoon soy sauce (dark)
2 tablespoon plain flour
2 litre of hot stock (chicken or beef)
For the mash
2.5 Kilo potatoes (I find red are good for mash, or Maris Piper)
1 large egg
25 gram butter
1 tablespoon milk
To make the filling heat a little oil in a heavy bottomed sauce pan and add the onion, garlic and carrot. Fry for a couple of minutes until the onion is translucent and beginning to colour. Add the minced beef, stir to break it up add the seasoning and spices and fry until the meat has browned. Add the soy sauce and stir. Take the pan off the heat and stir in the flour. Put back on the heat and add the stock a little at a time stirring all the time until the mixture comes to a simmer. This now needs to cook for at least 45 minutes. Don’t worry if it looks a lot of liquid. You strain the meat to go in your pie dish so you are left with a lovely gravy to accompany your meal.
To make the mash. Peel the potatoes and 1/2 or 1/4 them depending on size. The bigger the size the fluffier your mash will be. Put in a pan and just cover with cold, salted water then put on to boil. Once up to the boil your potatoes should take 30 – 45 minutes to cook. Once cooked drain and put back in the pan. Give the potatoes a quick blast of heat from the hob and then leave them until the steam reduces to nearly nothing at which point you potatoes should be nice and dry. Throw in the butter and then mash your potatoes once broken up add the milk, beaten egg and seasoning and mash until smooth. Don’t overdo the potatoes otherwise you will end up with something resembling wall paper paste!
Now to assemble the finished dish. Strain the filling from the gravy using a slotted spoon, small sieve or colander into a deep baking dish or two. Reserve the leftover sauce to use as a flavour filled gravy to go with your pie. Don’t leave it next to the sink though or your better half may think you don’t want it and throw it down it! Once you have strained all the meat and veg into your dish carefully place the mash potato on top of the meat and gently spread out with the back of a spoon. Use a fork to put some ridges in the topping and if you want put a little sliced tomato on top.
To cook put in a pre-heated oven at 190°C or 170°C for fan assisted for around 50 minutes or until the topping is nicely browned.
Serve with the reserved gravy and whatever veg you fancy (peas go great!)
‘Ome Made Kebab
I have been fond of kebabs since my beer swilling teenage years… You could not beat that garlicky, salty meat stuffed into a pita with slice cabbage, grated carrot, raw onion, sliced tomato and cucumber then drizzled with lemon juice, yoghurt & mint and hot chilli sauce after a night out on the beer!
Of course once I had kids, nights out were a thing of the past and a greasy donner kebab became something I’d have once in a blue moon.
And then I noticed that when I was having them I was enjoying them less and less. The meat seemed to have less flavour, you got less salad,yoghurt and mint seemed to not be an option and ask for lemon juice and you got funny looks. And why can’t you get a kebab in a pita anymore?
It seems that a lot of takeaways standards have dropped these days. And to be fair there is a lot of dubious establishments out there selling things they shouldn’t be to make a bigger profit. Not that I want to tar all takeaways with the same brush… there are of course some excellent takeaways out there.
The thing is, sometimes you just fancy a kebab. So it’s handy to be able to make your own.
If I had my way I would have a big rotisserie spit in one corner of the kitchen but I don’t think Kit would approve!
So how do you get something that tastes and has the texture of a Donner meat?
I’ve found the best method is what I refer to as ‘The Big Sausage’ method!
So here’s how you make it;
You will need
1 kilo lamb mince (or beef, or a mixture)
3-4 cloves of crushed garlic
1 teaspoon salt
3 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon chilli powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon dried oregano
Plenty of black pepper
1/2 tablespoon oil
Put all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl. The best way to mix is with your hands, so get in there and give it a good squish. The more like a paste you can get it the better.
Once all the ingredients are well combined get a large sheet of greaseproof paper and a large sheet of tinfoil.
Lay the greaseproof paper on top of the tinfoil and then get your meat mixture and lay it out in a line, round about 12” long. Now mold the meat into a ‘Big Sausage’ shape. Once you have a rough sausage shape you can roll it in the greaseproof paper to get it nice and round and compact. Wrap your ‘Big Sausage’ in the greaseproof and then the tinfoil. Lay the package on a baking sheet or dish (some juices may escape) and put in an oven at about 165°C (145°C for fan assisted)for around 80 – 90 minutes.
The meat will now be cooked. To serve slice the meat thinly and place on a baking sheet before giving it a flash under a hot grill.
The meat can then be served in a pita bread with Turkish Salad, yoghurt and mint and of course a good dollop of chilli sauce (preferably ‘Ome Made!) or as I’ve done here in a gigantic Naan bread which is then rolled up and sliced (and by the way if you wrap it tightly in cling film and put in the refrigerator overnight, it slices really nice and is ideal served cold on a picnic or as pack-up).
Here’s a traditional English dish given an ‘Ome Made twist, to be fair it was Kits idea. I was just going to do the plain English dish of lamb shoulder baked on top of layers of potato and onion, which in it’s own right is delicious. Add some spice, herbs and a curry sauce though and it takes the dish to a completely different level… This really was scrumptious! This is a fantastic dish to prepare the day before so that you can bang it in the oven the next day, forget about it and get on with all those things you need to catch up on, take the kids out or… go to the pub!
It really is simple. You will need a full or 1/2 shoulder of lamb. Some White potatoes, onions and garlic. I also used some dried mint, fresh coriander and some red chillies.
First of all slice some potatoes (skin on) thinly and some onions. These need to be layered in a deep buttered baking dish. I did about four layers adding seasoning as I went along. On the middle layer I put a heap of chopped fresh coriander, a couple of chopped red chillies and some dried mint. On the top layer I sprinkled some more mint and some black cumin seeds.
I then fried some mild curry masala in a little oil and added some chicken stock and let this cook for twenty minutes or so. Next prepare the lamb. With a sharp knife make a few slits in the meat and push in some pieces of garlic. Now rub the lamb all over with some Kashmiri Chilli powder and some ground cumin. Sit the lamb on top of the layered potatoes and onions and give it a good grind of black pepper and a good sprinkling of salt. Pour your curry sauce into the corners of the baking dish. You want enough so that it comes about 1/2 way up your potato and onion layer. Now cover the whole baking dish with a double layer of foil, creating a tight seal. When your ready to cook pre heat your oven to 200°c. Put the lamb in the oven and then turn the temperature down to 165°c Which means the lamb will be ready after about four hours (but should be fine up to six). If you want to cook it for longer (or your having a really long session in the pub!) then you can cook the lamb on 145°c. The lamb will then be ready after six hours but be even better after around eight hours. To finish the dish off, remove the baking dish from the oven. Carefully remove the lamb to a warmed plate or dish. The meat should be falling off the bone. The layered potatoes then need to go back in a hot oven to brown and start to crisp up. If the liquid is above the potatoes just spoon some off ’till you can see the top layer. Put the baking dish back in the oven for about twenty minutes.
To serve, pull apart the lamb, spoon out some potato into a dish and place the lamb on top, spoon a bit more of the curry sauce over. A nice dollop of natural yoghurt goes nicely with the dish but that’s all it really needs. A tasty, warming and comforting dish for a lovely lazy Sunday. Give it a go!
We hadn’t seen a friend of ours (an old neighbour) for a while, and we still had half a bottle of Pimms in the pantry that he had bought up on his last visit!
We seemed to be having a good run of weather so we thought it was time to invite him round for Pimms and a bit of decent nosh.
We decided to do slow roasted lamb, Middle Eastern style with Turkish salad, Tzatziki, ‘Ome Made Chilli Sauce and pitta breads.
I started the lamb off in the oven but finished it off in the smoker which gives it an incredible flavour. There’s a video on the Blog and You Tube (OmeMadeByUs) of me preparing the lamb (if you want a chuckle!)
We also had lots of Pimms which was great because we had plenty of fresh Borage leaves and flowers to put in (so much better than cucumber!)
So here’s the recipe for the lamb;
Slow Roasted Lamb Middle Eastern Style
1 x whole shoulder of lamb (leg works as well, but I prefer shoulder for slow cooking, you could also get a half shoulder but the leftover meat is great to use in other dishes)
Marinade (don’t be scared to experiment with these ingredients, they’re only a rough guide)
garlic 3 – 6 cloves (depending on taste) finely chopped/crushed
ginger – 1 inch piece finely chopped
chilli powder 1-4 teaspoons (again depends on taste)
Cumin powder 3 teaspoons
cinnamon 1 teaspoon
all spice/pimento 1 teaspoon
dried mint 1 teaspoon
2 teaspoons of salt
lots of black pepper (grind until it hurts!)
Juice from a lemon (and zest) or two table spoons bottled lemon juice
1 tablespoon oil (I tend to use olive for this but anything goes)
Mix all the marinade ingredients together (you can use ready bought Ras el hanout mix instead of the individual spices if you want).
Slash the meat with a sharp knife so the flavours penetrate the meat and then rub in the marinade… vigorously! Go on slap it on! The meat would benefit from being left in the marinade overnight if you have chance to prepare the dish a day in advance.
Put the meat in a roasting pan with a couple tablespoons of water and then cover tightly with tin foil (it’s sometimes a good idea to use two pieces)
Put in the oven at 165 C/330 F to be ready after 6 hours or 145 C/290 F to be ready after 8 hours (either way you could leave it for a couple hours longer and it will still be fine).
This is a great dish to do if you are out for the day or at work and you want to come in to have something practically ready to eat!
This has to be one of our household favourite meals. It’s like an up-market kebab! I don’t remember having Pimms before my late night kebab when I was younger though!
you may have noticed that there are a few references to slow cooked smoked meats on the Blog. You wouldn’t be wrong.
I recently acquired a big American style smoker/BBQ and it’s been getting a fair bit of use.
I love proper American food, I’m not talking McD****ds or K*C here but big hunks of meat coated in secret dry rubs and cooked slowly for hours on end. Pulled Pork, sticky ribs, slow cooked brisket even a humble chicken simply seasoned and cooked in the smoker for three hours is transformed into something remarkable.
And then served with sour cream, chilli sauce, bbq sauce with a multitude of different “slaws” to go with it, quality.
I even like a simple beef burger, ‘Ome made of course! Given the right treatment, a nice cheese or two to top, gherkin, onion, tomato and some nice crisp iceberg and some lovely, mustardy mayonnaise (which has to dribble down your chin!) and of course a good squirt of ketchup. Burgers can, and should, be good and a real treat to eat.
Anybody remember a certain burger I created?
So yes there maybe some recipes for smoked meats or BBQ food on the Blog, that doesn’t mean that a conventional oven can’t be used. However I can recommend getting a smoker, it is such an enjoyable and slightly addictive way of cooking!