Slow Roast Breast of Lamb with Lemony Apricot Stuffing

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Booze binging leads to luxury stinging… everyone has to be a bit frugal every now and then, but lamb breast is such a great tasting cheap cut of meat, you don’t have to compromise flavour. At around £4 a kilo, I think Lamb Breast is the new pork belly now that every other Briton wants a bit of a porky belly. The good news is that Sainsbury’s apparently ‘award winning’ Basics lamb breast comes ready rolled with string, so stuffing it is real easy, you simply: un roll-stuff-roll. It is quite a rich and fatty joint of meat so having a citrusy stuffing cuts right through the richness.

Feeds 3

1 lamb breast joint, approx 650g

½ lemon, Juice and zest of

40g bread crumbs

½ onion, finely chopped

1 clove garlic, crushed

2 sprigs of rosemary

Handful dried apricots, rehydrated in hot water for 10 minutes

Handful chopped spring onions

1 tbsp sherry vinegar

1 tsp Dijon mustard

Knob of butter for frying

Salt and pepper

 Preheat the oven to 140C

Start by making the stuffing, fry the onions gently in a little butter on a low heat until soft and translucent. Then add the crushed garlic and chop and add 1 of the rosemary sprigs allowing to cook for a further 3-4 minutes. Remove from the heat. Roughly chop the rehydrated apricots and add to the onion mixture along with all the remaining ingredients (bar the other sprig of rosemary) and season with salt and pepper.

Untie the lamb breast and spread the stuffing mixture into the middle of the meat (the outside part of the joint needs to remain on the outside).  Some joints may come with an extra bit like mine in the picture here, just place this in the middle, season it with salt and pepper and roll it up. Now re-tie with string (I actually used the elastic string that was originally used for tying the joint) and place on a baking tray on the other sprig of rosemary. Season with salt and pepper and place in the preheated oven.

This joint needs slow roasting on a low heat to allow the fat to render out of the joint (you can discard later) and the meat to be nice and succulent. You’re looking at around 3 hours, basting every 40 minutes or so with the meat juices so that is doesn’t dry out, at around the 1.5 hour mark I added a little water so that the bits in the tray didn’t burn. Turn the heat up to 220C and cook for a further 20 minutes to get the outer bits crispy. Now remove from the hot heat and allow it to rest for about 10 minutes so the meat goes real tender. This is where you can prepare vegetables to go with the meat??.

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