Why not try Middle Eastern style roast lamb this Easter? Full of flavour, it cooks slowly in the oven giving you more time to spend with your family.
Will you be sitting down to a roast dinner with your family this Easter Sunday? What will you be eating? Traditionally most people serve lamb for their Easter meal. Roast lamb with mint sauce is perfect for an Easter roast.
Lamb is also a symbol of Christianity. It goes back to the days of the Old Testament when a blood sacrifice was given at God’s altar to allow sins to be forgiven. In those days sheep raising was prominent so the sacrifice was usually a lamb. At Easter Jesus was crucified and rose from the dead, a lamb represents this sacrifice. Meeting a lamb at Easter is said to be a lucky omen. It is the one animal form that the devil can never appear as.
Food tends to follow fashion, in the same way clothing does. At the moment middle eastern flavours and cooking methods are becoming more popular. When visiting food festivals and markets you will often find more of these exotic flavours on offer. Lightly spiced grilled meats with salad in a flatbread makes a flavoursome meal.
Global cuisines usually have a range of herbs and spices that help create their unique signature. Splice blends help create the unique taste of middle eastern cuisine. You will commonly find different mixes of cardamom, cumin, clove, cinnamon, nutmeg, tumeric and paprika in Ras el hanout, a traditional spice. Chilli will add a little fire along with garlic and caraway seeds. Preserved lemons are often found in stews. Pomegranite molasses is another sweet flavouring that is used to flavour meat. Recently Leisure Range Cookers challenged me to come up with a middle eastern twist on a traditional Easter roast. The result was middle eastern style lamb.
Middle eastern lamb is perfect for an Easter Sunday lunch. It has a light spicy taste coming from a marinade of spices and lemon juice. Slashes are made in the lamb to allow the flavour to seep though while it marinades overnight. The lamb cooks slowly in the oven allowing it to become meltingly soft with a crispy skin. It takes a few hours to cook allowing you to enjoy Easter with your family without spending all the time in the kitchen.
When the lamb is ready just cut it into slice it up and serve it with flatbreads and other sides. Serving the dishes buffet style will allow you to enjoy the warmer days outside in the garden with your family. It also makes an unusual and delicious lunch that will encourage conversation.
A slow roasted lamb with middle eastern flavours.
A lovely succulent lamb needs delicious sides to accompany it. Pitta bread is great for stuffing the slices of lamb into and to go along side it I made celeriac coleslaw and a cucumber and mint salad. Celeriac is in season and adds a little more flavour to the coleslaw. The cucumber and mint salad is a great accompaniment to the spiced meat as it adds a hint of coolness to the flavour. When biting into a pitta bread with a mixture of fillings you get a great sense of flavours and textures. A traditional Sunday roast would normally have roast potatoes so I made some patatas bravas. This is a traditional Spanish tapas dish but the tomato sauce with a hint of paprika works really well with the middle eastern style lamb.
A light cucumber and mint salad in a yoghurt dressing.
Why not pin the recipes to try later?
What are you planning to cook this Easter? Let me know below.
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