Bank Holiday 6 Hour Spiced Pulled Lamb Shoulder Recipe

2016-05-02 13.38.34

It’s Bank Holiday Monday in the UK today and guess what, yes, it’s raining! What better way to cheer yourself up than making the most amazing and comforting food. This recipe is from the River Cottage cookbook. The book has lot’s of yummy recipes but this is our favourite. The merguez spices soak into the lamb meat as it cooks slowly for 6 hours and the eat just falls apart in your fingers and melts on your tongue. We put it in the oven an hour a go and I can smell the delicious aroma’s and spices already. This recipe has my mouth watering all afternoon and is our favourite lamb recipe when we know we are home and it is dark, gloomy and wet outside. Definition of #foodporn – this recipe!



  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1 cinnamon stick, broken up
  • 1 tsp black peppercorns
  • 2 tsp sweet smoked paprika
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • Leaves from 2 large rosemary sprigs, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp sea salt
  • 4-6 tsp olive oil


  1.  Get all your spices ready and toast the cumin, coriander, fennel seeds, cinnamon and peppercorns in a dry frying pan over a medium heat for a minute or so, until fragrant. Blitz in a coffee or spice grinder, then combine with the  paprika, garlic, rosemary, salt and olive oil, then blitz again to combine. You want to make a paste that you can really work into the skin so use as much oil you need to get a paste consistancy.
  2. Lightly score the skin of the meat with a sharp knife. Rub half the spice paste all over the lamb shoulder, underneath as well as on top, and especially into the cuts. Put into a large roasting pan and place in an oven preheated to 220°C/Gas Mark 7. Roast for 30 minutes.
  3. Remove from the oven and rub the remaining spice paste over the meat using the back of a spoon. Pour a glass of water into the roasting pan, cover with foil and return to the oven. Reduce the heat to 120°C/Gas Mark ½ and cook for 6 hours, or until the meat is very tender and falling off the bone. You can add another glass of water halfway through, to keep the pan juices ticking along.
  4. Transfer the lamb to a warm serving plate. Skim the excess fat off the juices in the tin. Tear the meat into thick shreds and serve with the juices spooned over. Simple accompaniments are all you need such as boiled potatoes or cabbage.


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