- 1½ kg boned shoulder of lamb
- 2 tbsp oil
- 1 onion, roughly chopped
Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…
- 3 garlic cloves, chopped
- 175ml dry cider or dry white wine
Cider is an alcoholic beverage made from the fermented juice of apples. Apple orchards were…
- 500ml chicken stock
- strip orange zest
- 1 cinnamon stick
A fragrant spice which comes from the inner bark of a tropical tree. When dried, it curls into…
- 2 bay leaves
For the stuffing
- 50g stoned dates, roughly chopped
Dates are one of the oldest cultivated fruits - it's thought that they were a staple part of…
- 50g dried apricots, roughly chopped
A relative of the peach, nectarine, plum and cherry, apricots are fragrant, with a soft, velvety…
- 25g dried cranberries
A tart, ruby-red coloured berry which grows wild on shrubs throughout northern Europe and North…
- 25g shelled pistachios, roughly chopped
- handful parsley, finely chopped, plus extra for serving
One of the most ubiquitous herbs in British cookery, parsley is also popular in European and…
- 1 shallot, finely chopped
Related to the onion (as opposed to being a younger version of it), shallots grow in clusters at…
- zest ½ orange
One of the best-known citrus fruits, oranges aren't necessarily orange - some varieties are…
- 3 slices stale bread, whizzed into crumbs
To make the stuffing, soak the dates, apricots and cranberries in boiling water for 30 mins, then drain and squeeze dry gently. Mix with the rest of the stuffing ingredients and salt and pepper.
Season the lamb well on both sides. Spread on the stuffing, then roll into shape and secure with string. Heat the oil in a large, lidded ovenproof pan. Add the lamb and brown on all sides. Remove to a plate.
Heat oven to 150C/130C fan/gas 2. Brown the onions in the remaining fat for 5 mins, add the garlic and sizzle for 30 secs. Now pour in the cider and as it bubbles, scrape up any caramelised bits at the bottom and sides of the pan. Add enough of the stock to come ¹/³ of the way up the lamb, and the orange zest, cinnamon and bay leaves.
Cover with a piece of crumpled baking parchment and cook for 2½-3 hrs, turning halfway through, until the meat is completely tender. Remove and wrap with foil. Strain the juices and spoon off any fat that comes to the top, then put into a wide pan and boil to reduce for 5-10 mins, until slightly thickened and rich in flavour. Season with salt, pepper and a squeeze of lemon or orange juice, if necessary. Slice the lamb and serve with the sauce, and parsley sprinkled over.