Marinated Shoulder of Lamb with Cardamom Pilaf and Lemon Fava Beans

2013-09-15 21.01.02
Our supermarket has started stocking jasmine rice. God save the Queen.

Not only jasmine rice, but French red camargue rice, black rice, carnaroli instead of just arborio. It’s a rice revolution! Basmati just doesn’t do it for me and this development is most definitely a game changer. I predict many rice-based dinners to come.

This dinner was inspired and guided by a couple different foodie sources: Olive magazine’s yogurt-marinated leg of lamb with cardamom rice pilaf gave me the luxurious rice and the marinade for the spice-covered lamb and Jerusalem – my new kitchen companion – inspired the lemony fava (broad) beans.

I didn’t have any yogurt for the marinade, so I had to try and McGuyver it. Boiling milk and corn flour gave me a thickish liquid that looked like yogurt, and a squeeze of lime juice gave the required acidity. I’m not sure if it tenderized or penetrated the meat as yogurt would have, but the lamb came out tender, moist and delicious so I’m going to say it was a success.

The rice was gloriously coated in onions, garlic and cardamom-scented oil and stirred through with fresh, cleansing cilantro. It was so complementary to the turmeric, ginger, coriander and cumin flavors of the lamb and it was all freshened up with the zing of lemony fava beans, double podded to release those über green, sweet beans which need practically no cooking at all. The lemon and butter create just enough of a sauce to moisten everything that little bit more, which should please those people who can’t eat meat without sauce – although if it’s cooked right in the first place…we won’t get into it.

Succulent lamb shoulder, fragrant rice and fresh citrusy fava beans make for a glorious meal.

Bon appetit!

Recipe adapted from Olive October 2013

Serves 2

500g Lamb (leg or shoulder), boned, rolled and tied
500ml Yogurt
1/2 tsp Turmeric
2 tsp Coriander Seeds, toasted and ground
2 tsp Cumin Seeds, toasted and ground
2″ piece Cinnamon Stick
5 Cloves
6 Cardamom Pods, bruised
1 tsp Black Peppercorns, crushed
3 Green Chillies, finely sliced
4 Cloves Garlic, crushed
50g Ginger, grated

Cardamom Coriander Pilaf
1 Tbsp Olive or Rapeseed Oil
1 small White Onion, finely diced
2 cloves Garlic, crushed
6 Cardamom Pods, bruised
2/3 cup Jasmine Rice
1 1/3 cups Chicken or Vegetable Stock
A large bunch of Coriander, roughly chopped

Lemony Fava Beans
2 handfuls of Fava Beans, double podded (frozen work just as well, just defrost and then pod)
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
Juice of half a Lemon

1. Pierce the lamb all over with a skewer or knife.
2. Mix all the ingredients together for the marinade, season and pour over the lamb. Marinate for 2 hours or overnight.
3. Remove excess marinade and cook on a rack at 450°F (200°C) turning every 20 minutes and basting occasionally for 1 hour or until meat is tender. Rest lamb before serving.

When the lamb comes out of the oven start the pilaf.

1. Heat the oil in a small saucepan over medium heat.
2. Cook onions and garlic until soft but not colored, about 5 minutes.
3. Add the cardamom and rice and stir to coat in oil.
4. Add the stock and bring to a simmer.
5. Turn the heat down and cover with a tight fitting lid. Cook gently for 10-15 minutes or until all the liquid is absorbed.
6. Stir through coriander to serve.

When you have added the coriander to the rice, throw the fava beans in a small frying pan over medium heat with a dash of oil and/or butter. Warm through and add a good squeeze of lemon and a touch of salt. Serve drizzled around the lamb and pilaf.

9 thoughts on “Marinated Shoulder of Lamb with Cardamom Pilaf and Lemon Fava Beans

  1. chesterperson says:

    this just looks absolutely yum!! and am defintely going to give it a go…. as far as restoring basmati to its rightful place…. I love it…. try frying with butter and adding 1 1/2 the amount of rice you have with boiling Marigold veggie stock… lid on tight…. down to the lowerst heat you can do and leave for 20 minutes…. I promise you will like it!! I am famous for my rice!!

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