Pot-roast spiced shoulder of lamb with chorizo and pearl barley

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This homely pot-roast lamb recipe, developed by chef Geoffrey Smeddle as a contribution to the Sunday Herald, carries a dynamic flavour thanks to the warming spice mix rubbed onto the meat. The underrated pearl barley is combined with chorizo to form a potent partnership with the lamb.

First published in 2015




Pot-roast lamb

Spice rub


To start the dish, make the spice rub. Add the spices, herbs and zest to a pestle and mortar and grind until a paste is formed. Gradually add the olive oil until smooth
Slash the skin of the meat and rub the spice mix into the flesh before leaving to marinate for up to 12 hours. If short on time, 1 hours marinating will be fine, but the longer you leave it the stronger the flavour will be
Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4
Add the lamb to a deep-sided roasting try and place in the oven for 25 minutes, before removing from the oven and adding 200ml of water to the tray (but not the meat). Very lightly baste the lamb with the liquid before returning to the oven
Turn the temperature down to 170°C and cook for a further 40 minutes. Baste the meat every 10 minutes to keep it moist
Meanwhile, cook the pearl barley. Place the barley in a sieve and rinse well under the tap. Add to a large pan and pour over 4 times its volume in water
Add the carrot, onion and leek to the pan, season with salt and bring to a simmer. Cook for approximately 20 minutes until the pearl barley is tender, then drain, remove the vegetables, cover with a lid and set aside until needed
  • 1 carrot, peeled and halved lengthways
  • 1 onion, peeled and halved lengthways
  • 1 leek
Once the lamb is cooked, remove from the oven, loosely cover with tin foil and leave to rest for 20 minutes before serving
Place a deep-sided saucepan over a low heat, add a splash of olive oil and slowly fry off the chorizo, allowing the oils to be released
Add the pearl barley to the chorizo and stir to nicely coat the grains in the chorizo oil. Divide the pearl barley onto plates and top with slices of lamb. Serve immediately
First published in 2015

Geoffrey Smeddle, proprietor and chef of The Peat Inn in Fife, started his career working for Herbert Berger at The Café Royal and for Christopher Galvin in London. He then sealed his reputation as one of Scotland’s top chefs by opening Terence Conran's Etain, in Glasgow.

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