The sting has finally gone out of the sun. It's Autumn... true Autumn. Cooler days with the glorious sun warming everything it touches. Not the sun I was swearing at a few weeks ago, but the sort of sun that's perfect for basking in with a glass of dry white wine within arms reach. The kind of sun that doesn't make you run from your car to your front door for fear of third degree burns. The sunny sun that makes you want to apply your raspberry lipstick now that you don't have to use Chapstick to protect your lips from the weather. The benign sun that makes you want to slide a shoulder of lamb into the oven and slowly roast it all through the lazy day. The gentle sun that has you piling shredded, unbelievably tender lamb morsels into soft fluffy buns and eating one after the other. Actually, that last bit has absolutely nothing to do with the sun because I'd eat this in Marble Bar in the middle of January.
NOTE: Start this recipe the night before.
Slow-Roasted Shoulder of Lamb
slightly adapted from Neil Perry's Easy Weekends
1 x 1.5 lamb shoulder on the bone
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground fennel
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 star anise, ground (I used a dedicated coffee grinder)
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamon
2 teaspoons sea salt flakes
freshly ground white pepper
60ml extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
The night before, mix the spices and seasoning with the olive oil and rub it all over the lamb. Place the lamb in a roasting pan just big enough to hold it and cover it with plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight.
The following day, remove the lamb from the refrigerator 2 hours before cooking.
Preheat the oven to 120 degrees C.
Take the plastic wrap off the roasting pan and drizzle the lamb with a little more oil. Pour 60ml of water into the pan and tent it with foil.
Cook the lamb for 7 hours. Allow it to rest for 20 minutes before shredding the meat with two forks.