Our Recipe for a Shoulder of Lamb

Wow!  That’s quite a headline, I suppose I’d better back it up now.

But I stand by it; it’s certainly the best Shoulder of Lamb we’ve ever had and it’s surprisingly easy.

This should serve 4 people.


  • 1 kg Lamb Shoulder
  • 2 large carrots
  • 1 large onion
  • 1 large celery stalk
  • 8 cloves garlic (yes 8!!)
  • 2 large stalks rosemary
  • 150ml beef stock
  • 150ml red wine


It’s important that the lamb is kept both moist inside and has some crispiness to the fat and the extremities of the meat.

Stage One is 6 hours of cooking in the Slow-Cooker.  Firstly, roughly chop the carrots, onions and celery and put that in the bottom of the dish.  Then mix 150ml of beef stock & red wine before adding the sliced garlic cloves and rosemary.

Place the lamb, fat side up, onto the bed of vegetables and then pour the fluids over the top trying to let some of the rosemary and garlic slices rest on top.

Start with the Slow-Cooker on high for 3 hours then turn it down to low.  The fluids should be bubbling nicely at this point.  Don’t lift the lid off the slow-cooker as you’re trying to get it to steam rather than poach in the fluid.  However, it’s likely that the shoulder will flex and maybe settle down into the fluid, don’t sweat it, just let it carry on.

After 6 hours the meat will be cooked, but will be a little flaccid.  Having pre-heated an oven to 180C, it’s onto Phase II.

Strain the liquid and discard the celery, I hate the stuff; then skim the fat off the liquid, keeping a little bit of it.  You should now have 3 components: the meat, the liquid and the veg along with a little fat.

Place the onions and carrots in the bottom of a baking tray and drizzle the fat that you kept over them.  then put the lamb onto a rack and put it over the carrots & onions.

Put the tray in the oven, along with a tray of baby potatoes that have been basted in a little olive oil and sea salt.  Roast for 40 mins.


Meanwhile, pour the fluids into a pan and reduce slowly by about 50% to approximately 250ml.

After 40 mins you should have a beautifully crisp and moist piece of lamb with some incredibly sweet carrots & onions and 250ml of sublime gravy.  The gravy shouldn’t need any addition or thickening.

Serve with some robust greens, we like kale with this.


Don’t skimp on the wine, it’s a rich dish and deserves something of quality with a robust body and we like a decent Bordeaux like this one.  We drink our fair share of plonk but it’s a false economy here.

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