Lamb

Moussaka with Potatoes and Eggplant

I have to say this moussaka with potatoes and eggplant is one of my absolute favorite dishes. Moussaka is popular in countries of the former Ottoman empire. There are lots of regional and local variations. This dish might be made with potatoes or eggplant, or both, and usually with ground lamb too.

Moussaka is eaten cold in Arabic countries, sauteed and served casserole style in Turkey, and layered and served hot in the Balkans. A lot of moussaka variations have an egg-thickened milk sauce on top, or a bechamel (flour-based) sauce.

Origin of the Word Moussaka

The word moussaka comes from mousakás, a Greek word, which came from the Turkish musakka and the Arabic musaqqa’ah, meaning chilled. The dish is usually based on ground meat, sauteed eggplant and tomato.

The Greek version has meat, eggplant and a bechamel sauce and it is baked in the oven. It is thought the Greek version dates back to the 1920s. The sliced eggplant layer on the bottom is topped with a ground lamb and tomato layer, and then you also have onion, garlic, allspice, cinnamon and black pepper in there for flavor. On top is a bechamel sauce layer. Continue reading

Braised Lamb Shanks in Red Wine Sauce

I fell in love with lamb shanks the first time I ever tried them. They are so tasty, so juicy and the flavor is amazing. Lamb shanks are best slow cooked and, although you can do them in the oven, a crockpot or Dutch oven will be your very best friend in the kitchen if you want really great results from this braised lamb shanks in red wine sauce recipe.

One lamb shank per person is enough, and they go really well with mashed potatoes and vegetables (maybe red cabbage, asparagus or carrots) along with your choice of sauce. I like to make lamb shanks in the crockpot and then either spoon the sauce directly over the meat, or else reduce it in a pan to make it thicker.

Tips for Braised Lamb Shanks in Red Wine Sauce

The following braised lamb shanks in red wine sauce recipe is best made in a Dutch oven, a large, heavy-bottomed pot. If you prefer to use a crockpot, sear the meat first, then put everything in the crockpot and cook it for about 8 hours on low or 5 hours on high, or until the lamb is so tender it is almost falling apart.

If you want to leave out any of the vegetables that is fine. At the end, you will need to use an immersion blender (handheld/stick blender) to get the sauce smooth. Add as much hot water as needed. The sauce should be thick but not too thick. Continue reading

Some More Hot Content For You

Greek Lamb Pasta Bake with Feta

This Greek lamb pasta bake with feta is a delicious dish, pairing pasta with ground lamb, feta cheese and other Greek flavors. It is similar to pastitsio, Greece’s answer to lasagna, and you will find it really delicious and warming.

Serve this Greek lamb pasta bake with feta with a simple salad on the side and a balsamic and extra-virgin olive oil dressing, or else just enjoy it by itself. If you’re into carbs, a slice of lightly toasted baguette bread would go well with this Greek lamb pasta bake with feta too. There are so many pasta bake recipes to choose from, and the great thing about such a dish is you can use pretty much any kind of ground meat, any kind of cheese, and then choose your own herbs and spices to complement the flavors you have chosen to use.

Greek Lamb Pasta Bake with Feta – What Kind of Pasta?

You can use any kind of pasta for this Greek lamb pasta bake with feta. I often use penne pasta but recently discovered maccheroncelli which is a long, tubular pasta that is great with heavy sauces or in casseroles. Another similar type is perciatelle or you can use macaroni, penne, spaghetti… whatever you like really. Continue reading

British Recipe for Shepherd’s Pie

A lot of people find this British recipe for shepherd’s pie perfect for the colder months, and I fall into that group. Really, is there anything more comforting or delicious than shepherd’s pie when the nights are getting cooler?

Shepherd’s pie is often confused with cottage pie, but shepherd’s pie is made with ground lamb not ground beef. Think about it – shepherds have sheep not cows! If you want to use ground beef, then that’s also tasty but it’s technically cottage pie. Our British recipe for shepherd’s pie is made with lamb.

We are making this in the British style, using bay leaves, thyme and Worcestershire sauce for flavor, along with meaty stock, an anchovy (that might sound like a strange ingredient but honestly it really complements the dish) and onion. The result is a fantastic British recipe for shepherd’s pie dish which the whole family will go crazy for. This is nice served by itself or you can have some carrots, broccoli, peas or another vegetable on the side. Continue reading

Lahmacun Turkish Pizza Recipe

Everyone loves pizza but perhaps you are becoming a little bored with your usual pepperoni or meat feast option. In that case, it might be high time you try something brand new like our lahmacun Turkish pizza recipe. Just about every cultures has its own take on pizza. It really is a global phenomenon. In Turkey, lahmacun is a typical dish, and it is basically a pizza base topped with meat and Turkish flavors.

What Goes on Top of a Lahmacun Turkish Pizza Recipe

Also known as an Armenian pizza recipe, a lahmacun Turkish pizza recipe is usually topped with either lamb or beef, along with minced veggies and herbs, including tomatoes, onions and parsley. It is baked in the oven until done, and usually served with tomatoes, lettuce, garlic sauce, roasted eggplant (aubergine) and/or pickles.

A lahmacun Turkish pizza recipe is Turkey’s answer to the thin and crispy kind we are familiar with in the West, and the flavors are very different from the Italian style of pizza. Whether you know it as pizza or flatbread (and the terms are pretty much interchangeable when talking about thin and crispy rather than deep-dish), there is no doubt this makes an exciting change. In our lahmacun Turkish pizza recipe we are making the dough but if you’re in a rush you can use a regular pizza base or try to get some Turkish bread which you can top.

Next in our lahmacun Turkish pizza recipe you have a tasty topping which is based on ground lamb (or ground beef if you can’t get lamb or don’t like it). Add tomato, lemon, chili, paprika, garlic and sumac (a tangy, red-brown Middle Eastern spice) and your lahmacun will start to take on its characteristic flavors. Top it with a tahini and lemon dressing, then finish off with pine nuts and parsley, and your Armenian pizza recipe is complete.
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Easy Lamb Shanks with Garlic and Herbs

Lamb shanks are always good although they tend to be more expensive nowadays than before. Go back a few years and the price was much lower, the reason being well-known chefs are beginning to serve lamb shank recipes in their restaurants, pushing up the price. This easy lamb shanks with garlic recipe is reminiscent of classic lamb shank dishes.

Never mind about the price being more than it was. Lamb shanks are not prohibitively expensive, they make a great dish, they are easy to cook and the meat, when cooked properly, is falling-apart tender and oh so flavorful. I like to cook easy lamb shanks with garlic often and I tend to cook them in the crockpot. The aroma while they cook is just incredible! But braising them in the oven is also a great idea and they will come out juicy, succulent and tasting just as wonderful as they look.

In the following easy lamb shanks with garlic recipe we are browning the lamb and some vegetables then adding garlic, herbs, white wine and stock to make a flavorful sauce. A lot of lamb shank recipes have red wine but this one uses white wine. If you prefer a lamb shank recipe without wine then simply swap the white wine for extra stock, either chicken stock or lamb stock.

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