If you are looking for a lamb feast, try the Dutch's Winter Wonderlamb dinner on November 13 at 7 p.m. Priced at $45 a person, this dinner party will consist of live-action stations and will feature a menagerie of guest chefs, each debuting their signature lamb dish.
Some interesting facts about Australian lamb: Not only is it very mild and juicy it packs as much as three times more iron than pork or chicken and six times more than fish. It's also raised ethically on pastureland.
To prepare you, Lambassador chef Conor Hanlon is sharing two recipes:
Barbecue Harissa Lamb Shoulder with Grilled Pita and Minted Raita
- 1 boneless Australian lamb shoulder (roughly 3 1/2 pounds)
- 5 tablespoons kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon black pepper
- 2 teaspoons toasted and ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons toasted and ground coriander
- 1 ½ teaspoons harissa paste
- 1 tablespoon molasses
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large carrot
- 1 Spanish onion
- 1 stalk celery
- 8 cloves garlic, halved
- ¼ cup tomato paste
- 5 quarts water
- 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 English cucumber, peeled and diced
- 1 bunch fresh mint, roughly chopped
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
- 8-10 pita breads, halved
Rub: Mix dry spices, salt and sugar. Add molasses and harissa paste. Rub mixture over the lamb shoulder, covering the entire shoulder. Marinate in the refrigerator for 12- to 24 hours.
Braise: Preheat oven to 275°F. Place a large ovenproof pot or roasting pan over high heat and warm olive oil. Sear lamb shoulder on all sides. Remove lamb from heat and set aside. Add celery, carrot, onion and garlic, and sauté until golden brown. Add tomato paste and return lamb to the pot. Pour in 5 quarts water, cover with aluminum foil, and place pot in the oven for 3 1/2 hours, or until lamb is tender.
Meanwhile, make the raita: In a medium bowl, mix all of the ingredients together. Cover and refrigerate until needed.
Remove lamb from the braising liquid and let it cool for 10 to 20 minutes, or until it is cool to the touch. Shred meat and set aside.
Reduce the braising liquid to medium-high heat (do not skim off the rendered lamb fat; it will act as a thickener later on). Let the liquid simmer until reduced by half. Place the braising liquid and solids in a blender. Puree until smooth. This will serve as your BBQ sauce. Mix sauce with shredded lamb.
To serve: Grill or toast pita bread and stuff with warm pulled BBQ lamb. Top with minted raita.
Australian Lamb Bolognese
- 1 ½ pounds ground Australian lamb
- ¼ cup olive oil
- ½ cup carrot, finely diced
- ½ cup onion, finely diced
- ½ cup celery, finely diced
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 ½ cups red wine
- 1 (28 oz.) can San Marzano tomatoes
- 2 bay leaves
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon ground coriander
- ½ teaspoon ground fennel seeds
- ¼ teaspoon chili flakes
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary
- 3 cups water
- Salt and pepper to taste
In a large pot over high heat, warm olive oil. Brown the lamb, crumbling it apart and stirring it to avoid burning. Remove meat from the pot with a slotted spoon, reserving the lamb fat, and set aside.
Add carrots, celery, and onion to the pot and reduce the heat to medium; cook for about 5 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Stir in tomato paste. Add wine and let it reduce by half, then add meat back to the pot.
Stir in the canned tomatoes, 3 cups water, bay leaves, cumin, coriander, fennel, chili flakes, and rosemary. Bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce heat to maintain a slow and steady simmer for 1-2 hours, until the vegetables are tender and the sauce has thickened. Adjust seasoning as needed with salt and pepper.
Serve the lamb Bolognese with your choice of pasta, such as a broad fresh noodle like tagliatelle or a firm dry shape like rigatoni or penne rigate.