SLOW ROASTED LAMB WITH HOT FENNEL RELISH

SLOW ROASTED LAMB WITH HOT FENNEL RELISH

Slow roasted lamb allows all of those lovely flavours and juices to render and mix together. The toasted fennel seeds give a wonderful aniseed like crust to the lamb that works so well with the deep strong flavours from the lamb. It’s an incredibly versatile piece of meat that can handle big taste partnerships! With this dish I create a roasting trivet of fennel and onion that then gets chopped to create a fantastic warm salsa to go on the side.

INGREDIENTS

SERVES: 6-8

1 whole shoulder of lamb, bone in 2kg – 2.2kg.

For the rub:

4 tbsp fennel seeds

1 tbsp whole black peppercorns

1 tbsp flaky sea salt

3 tbsp Dijon mustard

For roasting

3 bulbs of fennel, cut into quarters

2 onions, peeled and cut into quarters

75ml olive oil

For the chopped fennel salsa

3 tbsp white wine vinegar

2 green chillies, chopped

1 small bunch of dill, chopped

½ bunch of mint, chopped

Salt and pepper

For the sauce:

150ml lamb of beef stock

METHOD

1: Pre-heat the oven to 150C / Gas mark 2.

2: Firstly prepare the lamb. Place on a chopping board and using a sharp knife, score the lamb shoulder all over by slashing the skin, making sure you don’t go too deep into the flesh. Set aside while you prepare the rub.

3: Warm a small frying pan over a medium heat and add the fennel seeds, peppercorns and sea salt. Heat for 2-3 minutes, shaking the pan from time to time until lightly toasted, fragrant and aromatic. Remove from the heat and transfer the spices to a pestle and mortar and allow to cool. Bash together until they are finely ground.

4: Brush the Dijon mustard all over the surface of the lamb, on both sides so it’s evenly and generously coated. Sprinkle the fennel seed mix on top of this, rubbing and patting it into the mustard coating with your hands.

5: Place the fennel and onion quarters into a large roasting tray, so they cover the base. Sit the lamb comfortably on top and drizzle with the olive oil. Roast in the pre-heated oven for 4-5 hours, basting from time to time until the meat is completely tender and falling off from the bone. It should easily flake into pieces for serving.

6: Remove the lamb from the oven and lift out of the tin onto a board or tray. Cover with tin foil and allow to rest.

7: While the lamb is resting prepare the fennel salsa. Remove the fennel and onion from the roasting tray and place onto a chopping board. Roughly chop them to a ‘salsa’ type consistency and place into a medium mixing bowl. Add the vinegar, chillies and chopped dill and mint. Give it a good stir and season to taste with salt and pepper.

8: Place the roasting tray with all the lovely lamb juices over a high heat. Once the juices start to bubble away, pour in the lamb stock and de-glaze the pan. Reduce down for around 5-10 minutes until thickened, whisking frequently. Strain through a sieve before serving.

9: Transfer the lamb to a serving board or platter and serve it whole or flaked into pieces. Serve the fennel ‘salsa’ alongside with the reduced sauce. Goes brilliantly well with a potato salad or pitta breads.

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INGREDIENTS

SERVES: 6-8

1 whole shoulder of lamb, bone in 2kg – 2.2kg.

For the rub:

4 tbsp fennel seeds

1 tbsp whole black peppercorns

1 tbsp flaky sea salt

3 tbsp Dijon mustard

For roasting

3 bulbs of fennel, cut into quarters

2 onions, peeled and cut into quarters

75ml olive oil

For the chopped fennel salsa

3 tbsp white wine vinegar

2 green chillies, chopped

1 small bunch of dill, chopped

½ bunch of mint, chopped

Salt and pepper

For the sauce:

150ml lamb of beef stock

METHOD

1: Pre-heat the oven to 150C / Gas mark 2.

2: Firstly prepare the lamb. Place on a chopping board and using a sharp knife, score the lamb shoulder all over by slashing the skin, making sure you don’t go too deep into the flesh. Set aside while you prepare the rub.

3: Warm a small frying pan over a medium heat and add the fennel seeds, peppercorns and sea salt. Heat for 2-3 minutes, shaking the pan from time to time until lightly toasted, fragrant and aromatic. Remove from the heat and transfer the spices to a pestle and mortar and allow to cool. Bash together until they are finely ground.

4: Brush the Dijon mustard all over the surface of the lamb, on both sides so it’s evenly and generously coated. Sprinkle the fennel seed mix on top of this, rubbing and patting it into the mustard coating with your hands.

5: Place the fennel and onion quarters into a large roasting tray, so they cover the base. Sit the lamb comfortably on top and drizzle with the olive oil. Roast in the pre-heated oven for 4-5 hours, basting from time to time until the meat is completely tender and falling off from the bone. It should easily flake into pieces for serving.

6: Remove the lamb from the oven and lift out of the tin onto a board or tray. Cover with tin foil and allow to rest.

7: While the lamb is resting prepare the fennel salsa. Remove the fennel and onion from the roasting tray and place onto a chopping board. Roughly chop them to a ‘salsa’ type consistency and place into a medium mixing bowl. Add the vinegar, chillies and chopped dill and mint. Give it a good stir and season to taste with salt and pepper.

8: Place the roasting tray with all the lovely lamb juices over a high heat. Once the juices start to bubble away, pour in the lamb stock and de-glaze the pan. Reduce down for around 5-10 minutes until thickened, whisking frequently. Strain through a sieve before serving.

9: Transfer the lamb to a serving board or platter and serve it whole or flaked into pieces. Serve the fennel ‘salsa’ alongside with the reduced sauce. Goes brilliantly well with a potato salad or pitta breads.

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TOM’S TABLE (2015)

The ideal companion for anyone looking for simple everyday recipes with irresistible flavour, perfect for dinner parties or wonderful family meals.

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