Shoulder of Lamb with Chinese Herbs

  • 1 1/2 - 2 kg lamb shoulder, boned and rolled
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon 5 pepper mixture
  • 3 tablespoons peanut oil
  • 20 garlic cloves, unpeeled
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons shallots, cut into thin slices
  • 3 tablespoons Shaoxing rice wine, or dry sherry
  • 2 tablespoons light soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon chili-bean sauce (This dark sauce, more like a paste made from soy beans, chili and other herbs, not to be mistaken with chili oil, can be bought in all Asian shopping centers in Europe.)
  • 475ml homemade chicken stock
  • 4 small fresh rosemary twigs
  • 3 fresh thyme twigs
  • 2 tablespoons fresh coriander, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chives, finely chopped

Preheat your oven to 190°C or 375°F.

Sprinkle the lamb evenly with salt and pepper.

Heat the oil in a large frying pan till it smokes slightly, reduce the heat and lay the lamb in the oil, browning it slowly on all sides for about 15 minutes. Then place it in a large casserole.

Pour some of the oil out of the frying pan, leaving just enough to be able to stir fry the other ingredients. Add the garlic, ginger and shallots, fry for 2 minutes. Place this mixture in the casserole, then pour in the rice wine, soy sauce, chili-bean sauce and the chicken stock.

Bring to a boil, add the rosemary and thyme, then place a well fitting lid on the casserole. Place the casserole in the oven and bake for 1 1/2 hours or until the lamb is tender. Remove from the oven and leave to rest at room temperature for 20 min before carving.

Remove the garlic from the casserole, and place it next to the lamb, skim the fat from the liquid in the casserole and reduce it by a third. Cut the lamb into slices and place on preheated plates, drape the garlic round the slices and pour the sauce over it. Dress with the coriander and chives, and serve.

I haven't tried this one yet, but it is next on my list. I will be serving it with freshly made Spaetzle (cut noodles), as lamb and garlic go very well with this south German pasta.

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