Spring Lamb chops with a wild garlic and herb butter, butterbean mash and a medley of veg:

Spring is underway now, tulips are in full bloom in gardens, birds are busy making nests and the weather is…well not the great today. However we have had some glorious days which means a certain Springtime ingredient is at it’s best now and that is wild garlic. I cannot get enough of this stuff every year and try and conserve it in ways I can enjoy it throughout the year. In this recipe, a butter. Once made and popped into the freezer, you certainly won’t be buying shop-bought Garlic bread anymore thats for sure!

This recipe is a quick way of turning some lamb chops into something a little bit more special using Spring’s seasonal ingredients. 
 The wild garlic butter gives colour and full flavour but still allowing the taste of lamb to come through.
 The butterbean mash gives an alternative to potatoes giving it a lighter feel and also being a little more frugal.
Finally, the medley of veg “ Petit pois a la Francais” is a lovely alternative to do as a side dish for this recipe, fish and chicken.

Here is the recording when I cooked this on BBC Radio Leicester with Ben Jackson showing just how simple, quick yet so effective this recipe can be :- LISTEN HERE

Spring Lamb chops with a wild garlic and herb butter, butterbean mash and a medley of veg:

(serves 2)

  • 2-3 Spring lamb chops each depending on how big they are
  • 1-2 tbsp rapeseed oil
  • Sea salt ( I use pink himalayan but any will do ) and cracked black pepper to season

Wild garlic butter:

(Make this before hand and pop into the freezer)

  • A block of unsalted butter
  • a good handful of wild garlic ( if you haven’t got it, use normal garlic )
  • a handful of fresh herbs chopped- flat leaf parsley, basil, I had. You could use Rosemary instead if you wanted to.
  • 1/4-1/2 a lemon zest
  • season if you wish

Butterbean Mash:

  • 1 tin of Butterbeans drained and rinsed
  • a drizzle of rapeseed oil
  • sea salt and cracked black pepper to season

Medley of Veg:

  • 6-7 lettuce leaves such as romaine, little gem or the innards of a round lettuce
  • a few handfuls of frozen peas ( roughly 150g ) petit pois or garden peas defrosted and drained.
  • 3-4 spring onions or baby leeks cut into 3 including the green ends
  • 1/4 gel pot of chicken stock
  • knob of butter
  • a couple of sprigs of garden mint chopped finely
  • sea salt and cracked black pepper to season 


  • Just cover your butterbeans in a saucepan with water, bring to the boil and simmer for a couple of minutes.
  • In the meantime oil your lamb…not your pan and heat up your frying pan. Cook your Lamb for about 4 minutes each side for rare, more time for more well done.
  • Drain your butterbeans and crush/mash with a masher only slightly, drizzle with oil and season. Keep warm.

  • Rest your Lamb for about 5 minutes.

  •   Whilst this is resting bring to the boil your stock in 200ml of water and a knob of butter. Also season.

  • Add in your Spring onions and cook for a minute, then add in your lettuce and peas, cover and cook for a further minute.

  • Drain most of the liquid, add in a little more butter. Season if needed more, Pop in your chopped mint and stir.

–  Melt your Wild garlic butter.

–  Everything is now ready to serve.


Shepherds Pie

Nowadays we use mince in our shepherds pies, however back in Victorian times they would always use up their leftover roast meat as a frugal way of living. It must have been some treat back then as it still has a certain endurance about it every time I eat it. The same with a cottage pie also, which if some of you aren’t aware, that is used with beef mince or in this case would have been leftover from your roast the previous day.
 I love doing this and creating different recipes with the leftover meat than just putting it cold into a sandwich for lunch the next day. 
  This way definitely gives more flavour I feel to the dish, a deeper earthier taste. Plus it brings a coarse texture that can be more appealing to others also. Plus it’s less fatty. 
This meat was taken from just a fore leg of Lamb, a bit like a large shank that I managed to buy and I got two huge parts of the leg for only £8! Down from £21! What a bargain!
  So you see my readers, not always is a roast an expensive dinner, it’s looking for that bargain first and it’s also what you manage to get out of it. 

Shepherds pie

(Using leftover Roast Lamb)

Ingredients: (Serves 4 approximately )
  • Roughly 6 floury potatoes such as Maris piper, wilma or marfona peeled and cut into even size chunks.
  • 100 ml double cream 
  • a good size knob of unsalted butter
  • Salt and pepper to season
Meat mixture:
  • 1 tbsp rapeseed oil
  • approximately 400g leftover Roast Lamb meat coarsely chopped
  • 1 large onion diced
  • 1/2 leek sliced thinly
  • 1 carrot finely diced
  • 1/2 celery stick finely chopped 
  • 1 clove of garlic finely chopped
  • a small sprig of thyme
  • Any gravy/juices/stock saved from the joint, use for a sauce
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • a good splash of red wine such as a cabernet sauvignon/merlot or Cotes du Rhone
  • a few splashes of Worcester sauce
  • a few grinds of cracked black pepper
  • Salt if needed or if too strong tasting, use a pinch of caster sugar to even out.

 * Boil potatoes in a pan of boiling water until tender. Drain and mash the potatoes adding the ingredients to it. Set aside.
  • preheat oven to 190c 
  • In a hot frying pan pop in your rapeseed oil and fry off your onion for about 2-3 minutes. Then add your celery and carrot and fry off for another minute.
  • Add in your leeks to the mixture, fry of for a further minute and then add in your garlic and thyme.
  • Add your chopped meat, gravy/juices,tomato puree, Worcester sauce, wine, pepper stir and leave to simmer for 20 minutes.
  • Taste as you go along and you can add more wine or water as you wish if it becomes dry.
  • When the mixture is reduced down to a gravy like sauce and the meat is tender again pop into a pie dish, top with your mash and roughen the mash with a fork.
  • Then place into the oven for another 20 minutes or when the topping is golden brown and bubbling at the edges. 

*  Serve on its own or with some green vegetables and a glass of red. 


Leftover Moroccan Lamb cous cous




I want to share this recipe with you before the week is over as this week is all about promoting British Lamb week, ( 1st Sep-7th Sep 2015 ) something I feel very passionate about. I wrote this recipe for my column last month but I feel that now would be a right time to be reminded of it.

Here below is what I originally wrote:

Sometimes on a Sunday if the weather isn’t too hot then we will have a roast of some kind and if we are even more lucky it may even be lamb. Normally we go for a breast of Lamb as its cheaper however I bought this particular shoulder of lamb as it was reduced right down from £19 to £6! Bargain! An offer too good to be missed.

Because this lamb was so big for my partner and I its great for creating other dishes from it and thats what I am showing here. Sometimes the leftover recipes are the best.
So for this time of year cous cous is a lovely light alternative to have and I have included the lovely British courgettes being right in season at the minute to add a lovely texture, colour and added sweetness to the dish. Give leftovers a chance, it may even be better than the first dish was.
Leftover Moroccan lamb cous cous:



Cooked shoulder of lamb ( Could use shanks, breast or leg if you wanted )
1 tsp was el hangout spice ( widely available in most supermarkets or online) I use spice kitchen’s blend.
approximately 200g cous cous
1/4 tub of chicken stock gel pot
1/4 litre of boiling water
Sea salt and cracked black pepper to taste
3 tbsp Rapeseed oil
1 tbsp mild curry powder
small handful of almonds sliced
few sprigs of fresh mint finely chopped
few sprigs of fresh coriander finely chopped
1 courgette sliced into half moons
half a small green pepper diced
half a small red pepper diced
Half a red onion finely diced
1 clove of garlic finely chopped
Thumb nail size of fresh ginger grated
1 tsp ground coriander (Spice Kitchen)
1 tsp ground cumin (Spice Kitchen)
1 tsp ground cinnamon (Spice Kitchen)

Take your cold cooked lamb and marinate with a little rapeseed oil and the ras el hanout.

In the meantime take the cous cous and cover with approximately 1/4 litre of boiling water with the chicken stock added so it just covers the cous cous and cover with foil.

Fry off your courgettes in a little rapeseed oil and after a minute or two add your peppers and cook until starting to colour and soften. Add in the garlic, ginger and chillies and cook for a further minute or two.

Stir in the ground coriander, cumin and cinnamon, add in the lamb and stir allowing the lamb to warm up. Season to taste

Stir the cous cous with a fork, add a drizzle of rapeseed oil and the cous cous should be light and fluffy. Add the curry powder a little salt and pepper if need be and pop in your chopped coriander and mint.

* Add the Lamb mixture into the bowl of cous cous, mix all through and serve.




Lamb Kofta Wraps

  I normally like to keep my work recipes separate to the ones I do on here, but occasionally, I just have to share some with my readers and this recipe is one of them.
  The weather today here in the Uk is a scorcher so I felt I had to share this with you for a perfect easy, quick dinner that won’t have you sweating over the oven! 

  These are a great favourite in our house especially at this time of year and throughout Summer.  I tend to cook these as a great Sunday alternative and of course when the Sun is out, the BBQ can be lit. We don’t tend to buy Lamb that often because of price, but if your budget takes you a bit further, it’s a great treat to have. I always freeze some down so that they are there when money doesn’t stretch that far.

   Ive added a spice of Ras el hanout which is a spice blend from North Africa. It is widely available now and gives it that extra flavour such as Garam masala does in Indian Cuisine.  It is a great Blend that can be used in many recipes, of which, I do!
  Once all wrapped up, these are so Juicy and fresh tasting with all that salad packed in and of course with the little added bonuses of Lemon, Yoghurt and pickled chilli peppers, It’s a match made in Heaven. 
 Once you’ve had these, you’ll be making a lot more I assure you.

Lamb Kofta Wraps:

(Makes approximately 14 Koftas)


  • 500g Lamb Mince
  • 2 Tbsp Rapeseed Oil
  • 1 medium Onion diced finely
  • 1 tsp Ras el hanout ( I use Spice Kitchen for all my dry spices, they are fantastic)
  • 1 tsp Ground Cumin, 
  • 1 tsp Ground Coriander,
  • Half of a small Green Chilli chopped finely
  • 2 cloves of Garlic Chopped Finely
  • 1/2 Tsp Chilli Powder
  • 1 Level Tbsp Tomato Puree
  •   Sea Salt and Cracked Black Pepper for seasoning 
  •   Small handful of Fresh coriander chopped finely


  • A selection of Salad leaves such as Watercress, Rocket, Mizuna (to give a peppery) taste
  •   White Cabbage Sliced fine (to add crunch) You could use Iceberg if you can’t get it.
  •   Salad Cress
  •   Red onion sliced through the whole onion very finely 
  •   Cucumber sliced fine
  •   Fresh Mint leaves
  •   Fresh Coriander Leaves

  •   Soft Tortilla Wraps , If you want to have a go at making your own Flatbreads, I have my recipe click here
  •   Plain Greek Yoghurt
  •   Lemon to spritz over
  •   Pickled Chillis ,if required, to add extra hotness and authenticity (Can be bought in most world sections of supermarkets)


  • Fry off your Chopped Onion and add your dry spices (Ras el hanout, Cumin, coriander and Chilli powder). Cook for a minute, stirring and allowing not to burn.
  • Add your Garlic and fresh chilli and cook for another minute or two or until onions have started to colour and your Garlic isn’t burning.

  • Add some salt and pepper to season and pop this mixture into a bowl to cool.

  •   In a separate Bowl place your Lamb mince, tomato Puree and a little more Salt and Pepper. Pop into this bowl, all your onion and herb mixture.

  • Mix all ingredients together with your hands and add your Chopped Coriander.

  • Take a small handful of your Kofta mix and start to form a ball in your hands, then slowly shape more into an oval shape. Do this repeatedly with all your mixture. 

  • * N.B If you do too many you can freeze them at this stage.

  • Fry off your Kofta’s in a little oil as with lamb you wont need too much. Turning so that each side is cooked well.

*  Warm your Tortillas to packet instructions and then assemble your Wrap. Add a little salad, then meat, then salad. Spritz Lemon, add chilli if you wish and drizzle with Yoghurt and you’re ready to go!


Spring Lamb Stew with Vegetables and Pearl Barley

Last thing you need on a Sunday is to have yourself slaving over a Hot Stove cooking a Large Roast Dinner. Especially now the weather is beginning to become slightly warmer.
    In this recipe, yes it does take some time, however, it is all in one pot as you can leave it to carry on with your Planned activities. Of course, it isn’t just a recipe specifically for Sunday’s but I chose this as an easier option for you.

  This Recipe is Light, Fresh and Easy to do.  You don’t want to overpower this either with bold flavours as you want to capture that Lovely Spring taste of the Lamb, the Sweetness of those Peas popping away in your mouth and a favourite of mine…The Pearl Barley being velvety along the stew’s juices.  

  I have used stewing Lamb in this as the bones will give the extra flavour you need.  I personally like to pick up the Bones with my Hands and get every last Morsel I can Find.
  A dish like this  is always a great winner for me when you can pop it down as a talking point on the dinner table, tuck in and not to forget, there is a MUST for some Crispy Bread to mop up those last bits that have been sitting patiently at the bottom of your bowl. 

  This Recipe capture’s seasonality at its best, It can be done quite inexpensively and will have you craving for more. 

Spring Lamb Stew with Vegetables and Pearl Barley:

(Serves 4-6 people depending on size of Lamb pieces you buy)

–   1 Kg Of British Stewing Lamb (approximately 8 pieces) You could use Neck of Lamb also
–  1 Tbsp of Rapeseed Oil 
–  A Splash of Dry White Wine
–  2 Onions Roughly Chopped
–  2 Large Garlic Cloves finely Diced
–   3 Tbsp’s Tomato Puree
–  Homemade Chicken stock or 1 Stock pot (Knorr) to every 4 pieces of Lamb you have 
–  A good handful of Chantennay Carrots ( 200g roughly) Halved lengthways 
–  100g Pearl Barley cooked before hand in a little Chicken stock
–  4 medium potatoes diced into cubes of 6. I used Shannon but any will do.Could even use new season Baby ones.
–  1 Large Leek sliced a centimetre thick.
–  5-6 Spring onions Sliced into 4  
–  Small Sprig of Rosemary chopped finely 
–  100g of Petit Pois
–  A few sprigs of Fresh Mint chopped finely
–  A couple of Fresh Flat Leaf Parsley chopped finely 
–  Salt and Pepper to season


*  Take your Lamb Pieces and pat dry with Kitchen Paper. Season Your Lamb with Salt and pepper if required.

*  In a Heavy bottomed Casserole Dish/Large Saucepan heat up the Rapeseed oil and start to sear of the Lamb just till browned on the outside. Placing each pieces of Lamb into a separate dish once browned on the outside.

*  Fry off your Chopped Onions for a minute or two.

*  Add your splash of White wine to de glaze your large saucepan( allow juices to come away)  Add Your Lamb, Chicken Stock and 2 Tbsp’s of Tomato puree. Cover with water covering everything. 

*  Simmer away for 1/1/2 – 2 hrs adding water when needed.

*  Cook your Pearl Barley to packet instructions with a little chicken stock added and leave to one side.

*  After 2 hours or when the Lamb is starting to soften and theres about 30 mins to go. Then add your Carrots, Garlic and Rosemary.

*  Then pop in your potatoes after another 5 minutes.

*  When your carrots are starting to soften, add your Leeks, rest of your tomato puree and the  Cooked Pearl Barley.

* After another 5 minutes add your Spring Onions and Petit Pois. Only cook for a further 2-3 minutes

*  By now the lamb should be falling off the bones and the veg all cooked. Now Finish with your Chopped Fresh Mint and Parsley

*  Finally, Serve into Bowls with Crusty Bread