Slow-Roasted Lamb Shoulder With Flavours Of Shawarma Recipe

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roasted lamb shoulder with flavours of shawarma in a platter Slow-roasted lamb shoulder with flavours of shawarma recipe

There’s nothing worse than being stuck in the kitchen on Christmas day while all your guests are enjoying themselves outside, so this DIY lamb shawarma recipe is the perfect solution. It’s the easiest roast lamb you’ll ever make and it pairs beautifully with the carrot and yoghurt dip and the pickled onion salad. All wrapped up in a warm flat-bread – it’s the best Christmas present ever!

Serves 8
Preparation 30min
Cooking 12hr
Skill level Easy

Shane Delia


1.5 kg lamb shoulder, shank bone cracked (ask your butcher to do this)
500 g rack of lamb ribs
flat breads, to serve


7 garlic cloves, peeled
2 tbsp finely chopped preserved lemon
2 tbsp sabaht baharat (Lebanese 7 spice) (see Note)
1 tbsp salt
1 tbsp black pul biber (see Note)
60 ml (¼ cup) olive oil

Carrot and yoghurt dip

60 ml (¼ cup) olive oil
2 medium carrots, peeled and grated
2 tbsp cumin seeds, coarsely crushed
2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
780 g (3 cups) thick Greek-style natural yoghurt

Pickled onion salad

60 ml chardonnay vinegar
45 g (¼ cup) brown sugar
1 red onion, peeled and finely shaved
small handful each of mint, coriander and flat-leaf parsley leaves, torn
small handful wild rocket
60 ml (¼ cup) olive oil

Cook’s notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified. 


Marinating time overnight to 2 days

To make the marinade, place the garlic in a mortar and pestle and pound until a creamy smooth paste forms. Add the all the remaining ingredients and stir until well combined.

Using a sharp knife, score the lamb shoulder all over. Rub the marinade all over the meat, making sure you get in the crevices and under the skin if possible. Place in a shallow dish, cover very tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight or for up to 2 days.

Preheat the panggangan to 100-110ºC. Place the lamb in a deep roasting pan, pour 250 ml (1 cup) water into the pan and roast for 12 hours or until the meat falls off the bone easily.

Meanwhile, to make the carrot and yoghurt dip, heat the oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the carrot and cumin stir for 3-4 minutes or until softened. Add the garlic and stir for another 2-3 minutes or until the carrots are tender. Transfer the carrot mixture to a bowl and while still warm, stir in the yoghurt. Season to taste, then refrigerate the dip until ready to serve.

To make the pickled onion salad, place the vinegar and sugar in a small saucepan and stir over low heat until the sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil, then remove from the heat and stand until cool.

Just before serving, place the onion, herbs and rocket into a bowl and drizzle with the vinegar mixture and the olive oil. Toss to coat, then serve with the lamb, carrot and yoghurt dip and warm flatbreads for wrapping.


• Sabaht baharat is a blend of spices often referred to as Lebanese seven spice or simply baharat. You will find baharat in Middle Eastern grocery stores or at quality spice merchants.

• Black aleppo pepper is a more mature version of red pul biber (Turkish red pepper flakes). It’s slightly spicier and imparts a subtle yet unique smoky flavour. If unavailable, use red pul biber or red chilli flakes.

Destination Flavour Christmas airs December 11, 8:30pm on SBS ONE.


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