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C.C. Hogan

Drunken Roast Shoulder of Lamb

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How about served with Mash for a change.

I love roast lamb and roast shoulder in particular, but I do get fed up with all the roast trimming sometimes. Don't get me wrong, I love roast potatoes, but occasionally it is all too much cooked in oil or fat.

So, this is a little twist - I am roasting it with beer and serving it with mash potatoes, a rough jus and curly kale.

q?_encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B00901ABJU&Format=Now, the first trick is the lamb itself. If you do not already own one, I strongly recommend you rush off and by a basting pan - you know, one of those big roasting tins with a lid.  I do most of my roasts in one of these; it keeps the oven cleaner and the roast nice and moist. What is more, if you are roasting with a lot of liquid, then it is great for that too.  And that is exactly what we are doing here.

Lamb in a basting tinIn your basting tin, put ten small carrots, cut once longways, five shallots, cut in half, and eight skinned cloves of garlic. Add a handful of fresh sage and a big stick of rosemary.  

Cover this lot with a half litre of more of stock and beer of your choice.

Using the carrots like a trivet, place the shoulder of lamb on top, skin side up.

Using a very sharp knife, score the lamb deeply in both directions.

Rub in salt and pepper, sprinkle with a little olive oil (not very much) and then shove big chunks of garlic and rosemary into the cuts.

Don't slice the garlic thinly, but use big broken bits. These will toast beautifully and will be nice little taste surprises for your drunken guests.

Put the lid on and roast in a hot oven, 180C, for a couple of hours max, depending on the size of the lamb.

CookedA half hour before it is finished, peel and cook your spuds - nice fluffy ones like King Edwards or Maris Piper. Drain and mash them with good butter, a little milk, pepper, sea salt and some finely chopped marjoram. 

You might want to get your kale on to boil as it takes six or eight minutes. Don't over cook it though as it goes nasty.

Once cooked, remove the lamb and wrap up in foil to sit for a while.  Remove the carrots and shallots with a slotted spoon and keep warm.

Skim off some of the fat from the cooking juices and bring to the boil still in the roasting pan. Taste to see how it is doing and add more beer if you think it needs it.  Reduce this down a little, but don't go nuts.

Serve on plates with a big spoonful of mash, a big pile of the luscious lamb, and a big spoon of kale with some of the carrots and garlic. Splash some of the jus over the potatoes and lamb.

This is a good one to be served with a strong ale and plenty of it. A lamb loving friend (she both eats it and weaves with it) is very fond of Jail Ale from Dartmoor, so give it a go.

Have fun!

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