Slow-Roast Shoulder of Lamb

José Pizarro


A lazy Sunday roast, that allows you to take it easy until your hungry friends turn up, hopefully with a nice bottle of Ribera del Duero.

Serves 4 to 6

My good friend Oscar is the owner of Cillar de Silos, a bodega that makes wonderful wines in the Ribera del Duero region of Spain. I like inviting him round for a meal when he visits London because he always brings a fantastic bottle of red, such as his Crianza. To compliment the wine, I cook something like this lamb recipe.

The lamb tastes delicious served with a green salad and my baked potatoes and apples.


  1. Trim the lamb joint of any excess fat or sinew and place it in a comfortably fitting roasting tray.
  2. Using a pestle and mortar, pound the garlic, parsley and about 1 teaspoon each of salt and pepper to a paste. Pat this mixture all over the joint.
  3. Mix the wine, water and olive oil together and slowly pour over the lamb, while you keep rubbing the paste in. You will end up with a garlicky liquid in the base of the tray. Sprinkle the thyme leaves over the joint. Cover and leave the lamb to marinate for 2 hours. Preheat the oven to 140°C/275°F/gas 1.
  4. Start cooking the roast with the inner side of the joint uppermost: cook for 3 hours, basting the lamb every 15 to 20 minutes. After 3 hours, turn the shoulder over and turn the oven up to 220°C/425°F/gas 7. Roast for a further 25 minutes to create a crispy outside. Let it rest for 15 minutes before carving.


  • 1 shoulder of lamb (approx. 2.5kg), bone in
  • 8 garlic cloves
  • handful of flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 800ml dry white wine
  • 200ml water
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 thyme sprigs, leaves stripped