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Slow- cooked Lamb shoulder with Plums and Roses

Taken from Honey & Co, Food from the Middle East

This is for anyone who fancies Lamb in a slightly different way this Easter. Don't be fooled by the girly pink of plums and roses, the flavors are absolutely wonderful. This has become my go to recipe for winter months when I've got sunshine withdrawal issues!

Serves 4 to 6

1 lamb shoulder, bone in

1 celeriac

2 heads of garlic

12 red plums

1 tbsp sugar

3 tbsp dried rose petals plus more for garnishing

2 large cinnamon sticks

2 glasses of white wine

For the marinade

1 large onion

1 tbsp ground cardamom pods

2 tbsp ground coriander

1 tbsp dried rose petals

1 tbsp ground cinnamon

2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp ground white pepper


Use a food processor or a pestle and mortar to puree the marinade ingredients together to as paste. Rub all overt the lamb shoulder and leave to sit for about an hour at room temperature to allow the lamb and marinade to get acquainted.

Pre heat oven to 250*

Peel the celeriac, garlic, quartered plums, rose petals and cinnamon sticks in a large deep roasting tray and place the marinated lamb on top. Put the tray uncovered in the centre of the oven for 30 minutes, by which time the lamb should have started to colour and brown

Pour the wine into the tray and leave to cook for another 15 minutes, then pour in enough water to reach halfway up the lamb joint. cover the tray with aluminium foil. Lower the oven temp to 200* and cook for 1 hour.

Remove the roasting tray from the oven, baste the lamb with the liquid at the bottom of the tray, then re-cover and return to the oven. Reduce the heat to 180* and cook for a further hour, basting halfway through and again when the hour is up. Then add the plum wedges that you kept aside and return the covered tray to the oven for the final 30-45 minutes. The meat should be falling off the bone.

Preferably serve in the roasting tray, with some rose petals and shopped herbs sprinkled on top of the lamb for show, and a mound of buttered rice or couscous alongside, to soak up the sauce.

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