Cooking Lamb

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Cooking Lamb

There are as many ways of cooking lamb. It is not certain that this is the best recipe, but it is among them. And guarantees success

Roasted lamb is one of the most typical dishes of Castilian cuisine and one of the most popular of festive meals throughout Spain. It is a very simple preparation: you can make a lamb with only a good piece of lamb, salt, and water. Now, to get the point, especially in domestic ovens, is much more difficult than it seems.

Traditionally, the lamb is prepared in a wood oven and clay pot, which allows slow cooking that leaves the meat very tender. This does not prevent us from achieving a plate of 10 at home, but to achieve the results worthy of the best grill of Aranda del Duero, the key is to imitate the type of cooking that is achieved in these.

As with all traditional recipes, there are as many ways to prepare the meat when cooking lamb in Spain as mothers in Soria, Segovia or Burgos, and important variations such as the convenience of adding or not garlic, butter or vinegar to the roast. This is a guide that indicates the most interesting additions and the cooking method that, in our opinion, is more suited to the type of ovens that most of the houses in Spain have.

What meat should we buy when cooking lamb

Although in Castilla roasts have been made with all kinds of lambs, today the most common is to use the suckling lamb or lamb, that is, the unweaned animal that is sacrificed between 25 and 30 days of life and has been fed exclusively from breast milk. There are, of course, other types of cooking lambs, such as the recent (12 weeks old) and Easter, which has an intermediate time between them. These are not usually used for roasting, because their flavor is much stronger and may not please everyone (although they are perfect, for example, to make grilled cutlets).

The amount of lamb that we must serve can easily be calculated based on the number of diners, but it does not always fit in the oven
This week the suckling lamb has been sold in Mercadrid for between 11 and 12 euros per kilo, which raises its price in the butchers to around 15 euros the shoulder, about 13 the leg and a little more than 60 euros the half lamb, although the cost varies greatly depending on the quality of the piece and the different butchers. According to the OCU, in the Christmas season, the price of the cooking lamb has risen 1.5%.

How to calculate rations

The amount of lamb that we must serve while cooking lamb can be easily calculated based on the number of diners, but you also have to take into account the type of pieces that we want to roast and, very importantly, if they are going to fit well in the oven.

Making a roast lamb at home for more than six people is very difficult because it will not fit in the oven

If you are going to eat between four and six people, it is best to directly buy half a lamb (about 2.5 and 3 kilos of meat), which will allow you to add ahead (if you like) or ask for the barbecue to make other preparations. If you prefer to dispense with the rib – which has less chicha, but it is very juicy -, you should calculate about two legs for three people, or one leg for two people. You can make the combinations you want, but taking into account that what you are going to grill fits you in the clay source you have without clutching too much.

Difficulty in cooking lamb

It is usually difficult to roast more than half a lamb, four shoulder blades, or three legs. Here comes the first major drawback of this recipe: making a roast lamb at home for more than six people is very difficult, as it will not fit in the oven. If you are more diners there is only one option: roast more in various ovens (and compete to see which brother, uncle, or nephew has fit better).

The pieces should be arranged in the clay fountain in such a way that neither tape completely to the other. The pieces should be arranged in the clay fountain so that no tape at all to the other. (iStock)

Cooking Lamb – Let’s do it

As we said, the key to making a good lamb is to cook it slowly to make the meat look very tender, but it is also interesting to make it crispy on the outside, which forces us to vary the temperature during cooking.