The Empire Lamb Strikes Back

Most cooking shows on TV bore the hell out of me, it seems to be predominantly made up of a bunch of home cooks crying all the time because their ‘food journey’ is over or they couldn’t complete their dish in the hour timeframe provided.

On Gusface Grillah nothing can be cooked in under an hour and the only thing that will bring tears to my eyes is a faceful of smoke or a side of bacon (such a thing of beauty).

That said I have been enjoying Jamie and Jimmy’s Food Fight Club – namely because in each episode they do some sort of outdoors cooking involving wood or charcoal as the fuel.

So far a few of the ideas have been put on the long to-do list (I’m looking at you, duck prosciutto), but the other week I saw a recipe for Empire Lamb which would be fairly easy to whip up on a Sunday afternoon (you can find the recipe here)

The recipe refers to using the oven – on the show Jamie appeared to use a woodfire oven although given the fairly big drop in temperature to slow cook the lamb that seems unrealistic.

Unsurprisingly I used the offset smoker as I knew it would be easy to fire up to a nice hot roasting temperature then drop down for some low and slow.

The day before cooking you need to prep your lamb shoulder by making a few incisions and inserting curry leaves in to the lamb.  This is the first time I’ve cooked with fresh curry leaves and I love the smell!

empire lamb

The shoulder I got was not as meaty as I would have liked (the day prior they had a few shoulders weighing in a good kilo more – moral of the story: impulse buy always).

If you want to get in to the Jamie Oliver spirit you could try dropping the curry leaves from a great height but I found it difficult to drop in to the incisions that way.

Next you have to waz up the paste in your blender and apply liberally over the lamb.

empire lamb

Cover with cling wrap and refrigerate, taking it out prior to cooking so it can get to room temperature.

When you’re ready to cook you want to heat up your bbq or oven to 220 degrees to give it a nice blast for half an hour, then drop down to around 130 for 3 – 4 hours.

empire lamb

Once the lamb had been in for around 3.5 hours I wrapped it in foil and rested in a warm oven while I made the sauce.

The sauce is easy enough – I subbed coconut milk for the yoghurt mainly because I forgot to buy any.

empire lamb

I served on a bed of zucchini and red onion as I don’t eat a great deal of rice, but you can do it as per the recipe if you prefer.

The lamb didn’t really shred as I would have hoped but it was still tender and delicious.

Lamb appears to be the ninja turtle of my BBQing, always thwarting the shredder, but ends up tasting great anyway.



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5 Responses to The Empire Lamb Strikes Back

  1. Gravy says:

    I agree with the moral of the story.

  2. Bill says:

    Gus, that looks outstanding. I wish it would have pulled apart for you. I can see pulled lamb on a tortilla with feta, tomato, onion, and cucumber sauce. But, medium lamb rocks. This is on our summer to do list!

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