1 shoulder of lamb, on the bone
2 tbsp ras-el-hanout
2 tbsp olive oil
3 garlic cloves, crushed
juice of 1 lemon
pinch of saffron threads (optional)
1 large onion, thickly sliced
500ml chicken stock
400g can of chopped tomatoes
handfuls of mint, parsley and/or coriander, to serve
salt and black pepper

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Slow-Roast Moroccan Lamb


This is amazing. The meat is marinated first and cooked for ages until it falls meltingly off the bone. I love it. I have to admit I was a bit dubious about the idea of adding the tomatoes but it works brilliantly I promise you. The tomatoes cook down into a gorgeously sticky sauce that’s just right with the spice-crusted lamb. Ras-el-hanout is a spice mix that’s available in most supermarkets and includes more than 20 different spices such as cardamom, nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves as well as rosebuds. No wonder it tastes so good.

1. Cut slits all over the lamb with the tip of a sharp knife. Mix the ras-el-hanout with the oil, garlic, lemon juice, saffron, if using, and salt  and black pepper. Rub this all over the lamb, top and bottom, then leave the meat to marinate for at least a couple of hours. You can wrap it in foil and leave it in the fridge overnight if you prefer.

2. Preheat the oven to 240°C/220°C Fan/Gas 9. Spread the slices of onion over the base of a roasting tin and put the lamb on top of them. Pour the stock around the lamb and season with salt and pepper.

3. Roast the meat at the high temperature for 30 minutes to get a good crust, then reduce the heat to 150°C/130°C Fan/Gas 2. Roast the lamb for another 3–4 hours, depending on the weight of your joint and add the tomatoes after the first 2 hours. When it’s ready, the meat should be very tender and falling off the bone.

4. Remove the lamb from the oven, cover with foil and leave to rest for 20 minutes. Reheat the pan juices, stir in the herbs and serve with the meat. Some barley couscous goes well with this and perhaps some green vegetables, such as my green beans with almonds and lemon zest, and greens with bacon and garlic, both on page 136. No need for carving – you can just pull the meat apart.