I use crisp lettuce leaves for this salad as they hold up longer under the warmth of the meat.
Slow cook the lamb the day before, or overnight, (try my recipe below) or for a quick barbecue version replace the lamb shoulder with loin chops, cutlets, or a sliced marinated butterflied leg.
Chop 2 gloves garlic finely until almost puréed. In a mixing bowl, add the garlic, yoghurt, juice of half the lemon, mint, and salt. Mix to combine.
In a separate mixing bowl, combine leaves, cucumber, tomatoes and onion. Add half the yoghurt dressing and mix well to coat/combine. Season with salt and pepper.
To assemble, combine about half (or as desired) the warm lamb meat and the reduced lamb stock in a saucepan and gently heat, stirring occasionally. Layer the leaf mixture to form a stack. Place the re-heated lamb on top and coat the entire dish with a drizzle of remaining yoghurt dressing.
Tips from the author
Here is my recipe for slow cooked lamb
- 1 lamb shoulder with bone in
- 1 brown onion, peeled and quartered
- 1 large carrot, roughly chopped into 3cm pieces
- 2 sticks celery, roughly chopped into 3cm pieces
- 4 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
- 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
- 1 tablespoon each of dried oregano, dried basil, dried thyme
- 2 sprigs fresh rosemary, finely chopped
- 2 cups dry white wine
- 1 lemon
- 100ml extra virgin olive oil
Set oven to 90˚C or lowest setting. Select a deep oven tray to fit the shoulder of lamb (a lot of moisture will be released by the lamb during cooking).
Combine onion, celery, pepercorns, garlic and carrot in the bottom of the pan to create a platform. With a vegetable peeler, peel to rounds of zest off the lemon and add then separately combine the remaining herbs with olive oil together with a spoon and rub well into the lamb shoulder. Season well with salt and pepper.
Place the lamb on top of the vegetables. Pour the wine into the pan, so that it doesn't make contact with the lamb then cover shoulder of lamb with baking paper. Now cover the whole tray with aluminium foil ensuring it is very well sealed around the edges and place into the middle rack of the oven for 12 hours at 90˚C or 8 hours at 120˚C.
When cooked, carefully remove it as it may be full of hot liquid. Carefully remove the foil & the baking paper as the steam escapes and emove the shoulder of lamb to a chopping board/tray. Prepare a pot with a fine sieve on top and strain the vegetables and the pan juices, discarding the vegetables and solids. Allow liquid to cool until fat forms a layer, remove and discard fat. Then reduce remaining liquid to 1/3 of its volume on a medium heat.
Meanwhile, pick the meat off the shoulder of lamb whilst it’s still warm creating bite size chunks, discarding the bones and any areas of fat and unwanted tissue.