Greek lamb with orzo

Greek lamb with orzo

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(137 ratings)


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Cooking time

Prep: 20 mins Cook: 2 hrs, 35 mins

Skill level

Moderately easy


Serves 6

Entertaining doesn't have to equal stress, this spruced up one-pot is perfect for people with little time for preparation

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable
Nutrition info

Nutrition per serving

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  • 1kg shoulder of lamb
  • 2 onions, sliced
  • 1 tbsp chopped oregano, or 1 tsp dried
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 cinnamon sticks, broken in half
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 400g can chopped tomatoes
  • 1.2l hot chicken or vegetable stock
  • 400g orzo (see know-how below)
  • freshly grated parmesan, to serve

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  1. Heat oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Cut the lamb into 4cm chunks, then spread over the base of a large, wide casserole dish. Add the onions, oregano, cinnamon sticks, ground cinnamon and olive oil, then stir well. Bake, uncovered, for 45 mins, stirring halfway.
  2. Pour over the chopped tomatoes and stock, cover tightly, then return to the oven for 1½ hrs, until the lamb is very tender.
  3. Remove the cinnamon sticks, then stir in the orzo. Cover again, then cook for a further 20 mins, stirring halfway through. The orzo should be cooked and the sauce thickened. Sprinkle with grated Parmesan and serve with crusty bread.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, April 2008

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raven's picture

This is absolutely delicious given the relatively simple ingredients. I didn't have orzo so left that out (halved the stock) and served it with sweet potato mash. Used garlic olive oil, browned everything together, added a pinch of sugar and plenty of salt and pepper and left in oven for two and a half hours. All the family loved it, a make again. I do think it only serves 4 - 5 people though not 6 - a bigger piece of shoulder would be needed for six. Put it this way - three of us ate the lot!

natnee's picture

Very nice, and so easy to make as well. The lamb was very tender and melt in the mouth. It was a little bit too 'cinnamony' so think next time will omit the ground and just keep the stick so just to get a hint of cinnamon. Would also be nice with some peppers in it, so might try that next time. I served mine with carrots and broccoli.

clareweston56's picture

Delicious, very tasty! The only changes I made was adding 2 cloves of garlic and seasoning, apart from that I followed the recipe. If you want a Greek dish it doesn't need any other spices adding. It went down a treat. Orzo was delicious (managed to get it in Tesco). Will definitely make again.

rosanneblack's picture

Made this tonight for a family meal, added garlic, coriander, cumin, chilli powder, plenty of seasoning and only 200g of Orzo, although next time will probably use only 100g. Served with salad and bread and it went down a treat. Will be making again.

robhotspur's picture

your the one ive listen to because im a 41 yr old bloke that does things as in on tin,why add stuff this is made by people by their trade ha ha,anyway halfway threw so far so good wish me luck ,kind regards rob,ill bore you with my results later

bluejay's picture

Made this exactly as the recipe (including the salad) for a dinner party - there seemed to be a lot so planned to have left-overs in wraps the following day. After all the second helpings there wasn't a drop left, it was lovely and so tasty. Success !!

katerinay5's picture

Definitely definitely add garlic for the quintessential Greek flavour.
Two cloves chopped, will take it to the sky!

wombleuk's picture

I cooked this for friends on sunday for lunch - it went down very well indeed. A great dish that you can prepare early and leave it in the oven. I did have difficulty finding Orzo. None of the supermarkets near me stock it but I tracked it down in a speciality deli.

I will certainly cook it again but think I would add garlic. I do think garlic and lamb have a great affinity

pongobilly's picture

morrisons sell orzo and its quite cheap compared to the one you get in the box, asda used to sell it but cant find it there anymore, failing that i think waitrose always have it

smpdit's picture

Very Nice. Went down well. Added more vegetable in the form of carrot, celery and red pepper. and passata as well as tinned toms.

would do again

stellacsg's picture
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I made this tonight and made a few changes - browned the lamb and onions, added 1.5L of stock and some tomato paste, added 2 carrots and 2 zucchinis, reduced the orzo / risoni to 300g. Served with the suggested salad and bread. The end result was delicious and had plenty of 'sauce' left. A very easy dish with very little work involved.

breakfast1's picture
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Delicious! I did brown the lamb first though, as others suggested.'s picture
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Needs a good seasoning so don't forget like I did! Delicious dish though & I absolutely loved the orzo which I was trying for the first time. Would definitely make again!

dashna21's picture
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I love this recipe. I've made this dish several times but today I used paella rice as I didn't realise I didn't have any orzo. I always add some ginger and garlic to the mix, some corriander and cumin powder and Definately some red chilli powder. It's a must when I make this dish and its always delicious. But tasted yum with paella rice today. I always use lamb shoulder with bones & it never goes to waste. My 2yr loves eating the lamb. Great recipe but love adding my own touch.

lyncha1's picture
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Yummy! Don't know I'd call it Greek though. The whole family loved it, including two fussy kids.

katerinay5's picture

Couldn't be more Greek.

CalMamaCook's picture
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Made this for a party, only change was we cooked the last step on the hob as we didn't have enough space in the oven with other dishes. Result was delicious. Everyone really enjoyed it. We did use Orzo. Would make again, definitely.

carolinenelson's picture

I am confused - should the orzo be barley or a pasta? it looks like pasta in the photos. Does it make a difference to cooking time?

paulmellouie's picture

Orzo is also know as risoni in Australia, found it in Woolies 'macro' organic range in pasta the isle.

moggydrip's picture

Delicious! I made this as an alternative Sunday lunch. Served with crusty bread, the whole pot was finished off by 4 adults. Never had orzo before. I found it in Waitrose in the pasta section. It was gorgeous, really silky and worked perfectly with the lamb. Try this, you will not be disappointed!