Lamb is often avoided by consumers because of its specific smell, but also because it can be quite pretentious in terms of preparation. With a few tricks, however, you can turn it into a real delicacy, without making superhuman efforts and cooking classes.
You should know that this red meat is very rich in minerals essential for health, such as iron, selenium, and zinc. In addition, it is rich in fatty acids and contains the entire B vitamin complex.
Lamb is also dietary and can help you get rid of bad cholesterol. 100 g of lamb meat contains over 30 g of protein and almost 10 g of fat, without exceeding 215 calories. Find out the secrets of preparing this type of meat and enjoy the tenderness and pleasant taste of delicious and easy to prepare dishes.
How do you choose the right lamb?
Lamb with spices
Contrary to expectations, lamb dishes are tender and juicy (when it is fresh and properly prepared). Here’s how to choose the right lamb and what characteristics you need to consider when you’re at the butcher’s:
Fresh lamb has a pink color. It should also not look damp, as this could betray repeated freezing and thawing. The skin on the case should be white, with a yellow tint and not sticky.
Although for many people, the specific smell of sheep is considered repulsive, it is a sign of the quality and freshness of the meat.
Elasticity, age, and weight
A young lamb should not exceed 10-14 kg after slaughter. The age must be older than 2 months because, before this age, lamb can contain toxins very harmful to health. If you choose the lamb, taking into account these criteria, the meat will be elastic and tender.
A tested and reliable source
Buy lamb only from authorized producers. The whole lamb must be stamped to certify its health in the laboratory.
Preparation of lamb
Like other red meats, lamb requires certain conditions to have the desired tenderness and taste in the final dish. Boiling and cooking temperature are very important. You need to know this properly about marinating lamb:
Lamb recipe for lamb
The lamb marinade is meant to soften the meat and transform its smell, giving it a pleasant aroma of spices.
A simple recipe for this berry contains 200 ml sunflower oil, 500 ml dry white wine, 500 ml dry red wine, freshly chopped rosemary, dried thyme, 10-12 strands of chopped green onions, 7-8 strands of green garlic chopped, 5-6 bay leaves, 20 g of black peppercorns and 3-4 tablespoons of salt. The quantities are indicative of about 6 kg of lamb but can be adjusted according to the amount of meat used.
Preparation of lamb steak
Lamb meat can be prepared in several ways, according to the culinary preferences of consumers, but also depending on the characteristics of the chosen dish. Here are some tips for the most common steak recipes that you will not fail:
For 2 kg of sliced lamb, you will need the following ingredients: two tablespoons of lard (or tallow), 0.5 kilograms of lightly smoked pork ribs, 500 ml of dry white wine, two large onions cut into slices, one hot pepper, two cloves of garlic, salt, pepper, and dried thyme to taste. You can also add 3-4 sliced carrots if you want a sweeter taste.
Put the pieces of meat in a cauldron, with salt, lard, 250 ml of water, and 250 ml of wine and simmer for an hour. Fill with wine and water as needed and then add the pieces of ribs or drizzle, onion, finely chopped pepper, and cleaned and crushed garlic. Add pepper to taste and thyme, leave the pot on the fire for another 10 minutes. At the end, cover the pot and let the dish rest for 15 minutes before serving.
Tips for preparing lamb
To be sure of your success in the kitchen, it is important to take into account some useful tips regarding the correct preparation of meat. Here are some recommendations for lamb:
- The specific smell is reduced by removing excess fat and skin; they can be cut with a kitchen knife.
- To tenderize the lamb, it is important to use a spice, wine, and oil bath.
- Lamb must be acclimatized before cooking, in order to preserve its tenderness and texture. If you kept it marinated in the fridge, let it rest for 2-3 hours at room temperature before preparing it thermally.
- Dishes and utensils are very important when it comes to such a demanding preparation. Avoid Teflon and stainless steel and use cast iron, ceramic, heat-resistant, or enameled glassware. If you prepare lamb in a cauldron of soup, use a wooden spoon to mix the ingredients. If you make a fuss, do not put the hot meat in a plastic bowl, which can eliminate certain toxins in contact with heat, and opt for a glass or ceramic one.
- In terms of spices and seasoning, it is very important to choose those that value lamb. Onions and garlic have a place of honor in this list, but you can also use bay leaves, black and red pepper, mint, rosemary, thyme, cumin, and even ginger. Also, don’t forget that this type of meat shines when it is “touched” by dry red or white wine or a mixture of the two.
- Pay attention to the chosen pieces of meat, depending on the dish you want to get. The meat with bone is perfect for soup, lamb in a cauldron, or steak prepared in the oven, but if you want a grilled dish, opt for pastrami or chops.
- Lamb meat can be both prepared in blood and well made, depending on your preferences and, possibly, your guests. But great chefs suggest its incomplete preparation when it comes to steak, as in the case of beef, so that the final color of the dish retains a pink hue.
- The lamb is usually served hot, but first, it is left to rest for 10-15 minutes after it has been removed from the heat.
The health benefits of lamb
Lamb meat is rich in minerals essential for iron health. Omega 3 fatty acids and good monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats are good for the heart and circulatory health. Also, fatty acids support most of the body’s physiological processes.
Known as one of the cleanest red meats, lamb is an important source of easily digestible protein. In addition, it does not contain bad cholesterol and thus contributes to strengthening the immune system.
Being an important source of iron, lamb prevents and treats anemia. In addition to this mineral, it also contains manganese, copper, and selenium.
Lamb also contains the whole complex of B vitamins, beneficial and very important for health:
- Vitamin B1 helps to metabolize food properly and turn it into energy. It is also beneficial for the circulatory and nervous systems and muscles.
- Vitamin B2 helps tissue development and repair and stimulates antibody production.
- Vitamin B3 is essential for cellular health and the functioning of the digestive system, having an important role in regulating hormone levels.
- Vitamin B5 helps the nervous system to function properly.
- Vitamin B6 stimulates insulin production but also ensures the health of blood cells. It is also essential for the development and regeneration of muscle and nerve cells.
- Vitamin B7 regulates the level of enzymes in the body, but also that of glucose.
- Vitamin B9 is important for optimal cell growth and function.
- Vitamin B12 helps maintain the health of the central nervous system.
Now, you know all about the preparation and benefits of meat. Here is the most recommended recipe called Mutton Curry Andhra Style.