Tag Archives: lamb

Spicy Lebanese-Inspired Lamb Pasties

The contents of these wonderfully light, soooooo tasty pasties was supposed to be incased in pizza dough to create calzone but I didn’t fancy that; instead opting for ready-made short-crust pastry. The end result was even better than I had anticipated and a bit of a hit in our kitchen (Connagh had his own supply that were snaffled through alarmingly quickly).

The delicious, sweet lamb is gently spiced with the wonderful combination that is cumin, cinnamon and paprika and then nestled together with the tasty crunch of roasted pine nuts mixed with spinach and potatoes. Gorgeous when they come straight out of the oven but equally lovely cold (as Connagh will attest) so ideal for picnics, al fresco lunches or just…snaffling snacks!

Makes 12 – 14

What you need…

1 x 14cm saucer

2 x baking sheets, lined with parchment paper or Bake O Glide

6 tablespoons pine nuts

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 onions, chopped finely

2 garlic cloves, chopped

400g lamb mince

2 teaspoons ground cumin

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground paprika

175g spinach leaves

300g potatoes, diced and just cooked

1kg ready-made short-crust pastry

Plain flour, for dusting

1 egg, lightly beaten

What to do…

First of all, make the filling. Dry-fry the pine nuts until golden – don’t take your eyes off them – they brown really quickly. Tip out onto kitchen paper and set aside.

In the same frying pan, heat the oil and sauté the onion and garlic for 5 minutes. Add the mince, breaking it up with a wooden spoon. Stir in the spices and sauté for a further 10 minutes.

Add the spinach and cook until just wilted. Stir in the pine nuts and cooked potato. Season well. Set aside to cool. (You could do this several hours in advance or even the day before, keeping the cooled mixture in the fridge).

When you’re ready to assemble your pasties, preheat your oven to 200˚c / 400˚f / gas 6.

Dust your work surface with plain flour and roll the pastry out to about 5mm thick. Use the saucer to create 12- 14 pastry circles, inverting it onto the pastry and cutting around it with a sharp knife.

Use a spoon to dollop some mixture onto one half of each circle. Brush the edges of the pastry with water and then bring them together, crimping to ensure a good seal. Brush each pasty with beaten egg and pop them in the oven on the baking trays to cook for 20 – 25 minutes or until golden brown and yummy-looking!

Allow to cool down just a little before commencing the snaffling! Enjoy – rather lovely!

Inspired by…

Ideal Home Magazine

How easy…

Ever so, especially with the ready-made pastry!

Baked Lamb with Rosemary and a Little Aside of Redcurrant & Mint Sauce

What can I tell you? Succulent, full of flavour, just falls off the bone – a real treat – and not just for Easter either – this recipe will be revisited on several spring and early summer Sundays – it is delicious, very moreish and cooks itself, allowing you to do other things! The redcurrant and mint sauce is simply the best and emphasises the lovely flavour of the lamb perfectly. If you haven’t tried this Delia-inspired recipe, give it a go – it’s an absolute winner!

What you need…

1 x 1.8 – 2kg leg of lamb

2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary leaves plus 3-4 sprigs

1 clove garlic, chopped

2 tablespoons olive oil

½ teaspoon rock salt

Black pepper

for the sauce & the gravy

250ml jar redcurrant jelly

3 tablespoons red wine vinegar

4 tablespoons chopped fresh mint

Sea salt and black pepper

275 ml dry white wine

1 x lamb stock cube

A good shake of Bisto lamb gravy granules

Glug of milk/splash of double cream

What to do…

In a small food processor, whizz together the rosemary leaves, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper. (Use a pestle and mortar to crush and the salt and rosemary if you don’t have a small food processor).

Spread a large sheet of foil in a roasting tin and place the lamb on it. Stab the fleshy parts of the joint with a skewer. Spread the rosemary mixture all over the upper surface of the lamb and tuck in the sprigs of rosemary.

Bring the edges of the foil up over the lamb, make a pleat in the top and scrunch the ends. This foil parcel should be fairly loose to allow the air to circulate. Bake the lamb for two hours, then open out the foil, baste the joint well with the juices and return it to the oven for a further 30 minutes to brown. (This cooking time should produce the lamb very slightly pink: you can cook for less or more time according to how you like the joint served).

Meanwhile, make the sauce by combining 3 tablespoons of the redcurrant jelly with the vinegar in a small saucepan over a gentle heat. Use a balloon whisk to help dissolve the jelly into the vinegar. Add the chopped mint and some seasoning and pour into a jug – the sauce doesn’t need to be served warm.

When the lamb is cooked, remove it from the oven and allow it to rest for 20 minutes before carving. Discard the foil, spoon off the fat and make some gravy with the juices left in the tin: in a saucepan, combine the juices with the white wine and the remaining redcurrant jelly from the jar. When the gravy is hot, crumble in the lamb stock cube to intensify the flavour. To create a lovely consistency, add gravy granules until it looks how you would like it to. Taste. Add milk and/or cream to tone down any slightly acidic flavours and to ensure the gravy becomes rich and silky.

Serving suggestion…

Rosemary-roasted root vegetables, John’s Yorkshire Puddings (both previously blogged) work well with spring greens, peas or broccoli.

Inspired by…

Delia Smith

How easy…

Dead easy: baste it, pop it in the oven and it cooks itself!