‘I created it quite a few years back now simply from putting together some of my favourite ingredients, lamb, pomegranate molasses and yoghurt. The dish originated as lamb ribs glazed in the sauce but one day one of the chefs overcooked the ribs and all the meat just fell off the bones! And so I decided we should serve it as crispy chunks of lamb breast, the dish was elevated to new heights and stayed this way ever since.’
Twice cooked crispy lamb breast with pomegranate sauce, Turkish yoghurt & herbs
Serves 4-6 as part of tapas meal
The lamb is best prepared one day in advance and left to cool overnight.
For the lamb
- 1 Bay leaf
- 1 large onion, peeled & roughly sliced
- 1 lamb breast, bone in (approx. 2 kg). Ask your butcher to cut it into 4/5 pieces to make it more manageable
For the pomegranate sauce
100ml Pomegranate molasses (find this in the World Food’s section of large supermarkets)
- 50ml Cider vinegar
- 25g Dark brown sugar
- 1/4 tsp black peppercorns
- 1/4 tsp fennel seeds
- 1/4 tsp coriander seeds
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 4 cloves
- 360g Turkish/Greek yoghurt
- 4 sprigs Mint, leaves picked & finely shredded
- 4 sprigs Parsley, leaves picked & finely shredded
Preheat your oven to 160C (fan)/ 180C / gas mark 4.
Place the lamb breast, sliced onion and bay leaf into a large roasting tray or casserole dish. Add enough water to cover the lamb by around 2cm.
Cover with foil or a lid and place into the oven for approximately 3 hours. You will know the lamb is ready when you can pull the bones away without any resistance. Remove the lamb from the stock. Place the stock in the fridge to cool. Let the lamb cool down enough so you can handle it, but don’t allow it to cool down completely as you will find it more difficult to remove all the bones and cartilage.
Remove as much meat as possible, discarding the bones and any cartilage. Place the meat into the fridge until the fat is set, preferably overnight. The next day cut the meat into approx. 2cm cubes.
Heat your oven to 170C (fan)/ 190C/ Gas mark 5.
Place all the spices onto a small roasting tray and toast them in the middle of the oven for approximately 6 minutes.
Get your cooled stock out of the fridge. Remove and discard all of the fat, which will have risen to the top of your stock. Place the remaining liquid into a small pot and add the spices, pomegranate molasses, cider vinegar and sugar. Allow this to simmer, stirring occasionally, until it has a consistency similar to single cream, strain off the spices.
Place the diced lamb into a medium hot dry pan and fry until crispy all over, turning occasionally and seasoning with sea salt as you go along. Be aware that a lot of fat will render out and the pan may spit at you so be careful as you are turning the lamb over. The pieces of lamb will break up a little in the pan but that’s fine. You want some bits that are super crispy and some bits that are soft in the middle- this can take anything between 8-12 minutes.
Drain the lamb in a colander and discard the excess fat.To serve divide up the yoghurt into individual bowls or into one big bowl for the table. Place the lamb on top, pour over as much sauce as you like and sprinkle over the herbs. Job done!
Photo by : Manuel Vazquez/ Tripspace.
Share, savour, enjoy!