Shoulder of lamb a la Turque

This economical dish is both tasty and substantial. Serve with roast potatoes and a seasonal green vegetable.


serves 4 to 6.
1 1/2 kg (3 lb) shoulder of lamb, boned
1 garlic clove, cut into slivers (optional)
25 g (1 oz) dripping or lard, melted
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
300 ml (1/2 pint) lamb stock, made from the shoulder bones, or beef stock
1 tbsp flour (optional)

for the stuffing:

Butter for frying
1 small onion, peeled and finely chopped
75 g (3 oz) lamb's liver, chopped
50 g (2 oz) raisins
75 g (3 oz) long-grain rice, cooked
1 tsp spoon freshly chopped rosemary or 1/2 tsp dried rosemary
1/2 egg, beaten

to garnish:

8 prunes, soaked overnight, drained and stoned
8 tsp chutney or sweet pickle


1. To prepare the stuffing, melt a knob of butter in a small pan. Add the onion and fry for 5 minutes or until golden. Add the chopped liver and fry briskly until the juices run pink.

2. Remove from the heat and stir in the remaining stuffing ingredients, binding with the egg. Season to taste.

3. Put the lamb on a board and push the stuffing into the cavity. Roll up the meat and tie securely with string, using skewers if necessary. If using garlic, make incisions in the meat with a sharp knife and insert the garlic slivers. Brush the joint with dripping or lard and sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper.

4. Put the joint on a rack in a roasting pan and roast on the top shelf of a very hot oven (230°C/450°F or Gas Mark 8) for 15 to 20 minutes to brown the meat, basting occasionally. Transfer the tin to the middle shelf of the oven and lower the heat to moderate (180°C/350°F or Gas Mark 4). Roast for 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until the juices run rosy pink when the meat is pierced with a skewer.

5. Remove the meat from the pan and place it on a hot serving platter to 'rest'. Drain off the excess fat from the roasting pan. Pour in the lamb or beef stock and bring to the boil over high heat, stirring constantly. If a thicker gravy is liked, 1 tablespoon flour can be stirred into the pan and browned before the stock is added. Season to taste.

6. Carve the lamb into slices and arrange in the centre of the serving platter. Garnish the edge of the platter with the prunes stuffed with chutney or pickle. Serve the gravy separately in a gravy boat.

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