While roast lamb is often associated with the Sunday lunch table of Western households (the meat has long been a staple in England, where sheep are abundant), this versatile and flavourful protein has been popular across the globe for centuries. Roast lamb features in the culinary histories of Greece, Turkey, the Levant, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Morocco. And the history of lamb enjoyed as food goes back more than 10,000 years.
As you’ll know from shish kebab, lamb also lends itself to being well spiced before cooking – especially if a naked flame is involved. One Medieval recipe, which dates back to an anonymous Andalusian cookbook of the 13th Century, describes a roasted lamb that is seasoned with pepper, caraway, fennel, cinnamon, thyme and murri, which they call “the Roast of Kings”.
Still today, even if you’re tucking into a British lamb roast seasoned only with rosemary, it feels like a right royal treat. Like a good steak, you should always allow for a spot of pink in the middle, too. The juicier the better with this prime cut.
Roasted Lamb Rack at Table 9
If you’re feeling flush, book at Table 9, the award-winning restaurant by Nick Alvis and Scott Price. Their roasted lamb rack is seasoned with Provençale herbs and served with mashed potato purée and assorted veg. They also do a pistachio-crusted lamb loin with confit fennel and plum jus and, for Friday brunch, olive-crusted chops with chicory.
Where: Table 9, Hilton Dubai Creek
Contact: +971 4 212 7560, website
Saturday Roast at Qwerty
Go over the weekend for their Saturday roast, from 1pm-7pm, for a British-style feast. The meat of your choice comes with cheesy cauliflower, perfectly roasted potatoes, broccoli, cabbage, sweet roasted carrots, Yorkshire puddings and gravy. You can reward yourself with a slice of their delectable Black Forest Gateau, too, or head to the bar for their two-for-one special, on at the same time every Saturday.
Where: Qwerty, Media One Hotel
Contact: +971 4 247 1000,
Slow-Roasted Braised Lamb Shank at Couqley
Want to feel like Asterix and Obelix at a banquet? Take your hearty appetite to Couqley. On their special menu, there’s a slow-roasted lamb shank (AED139), with fall-off-the-bone meat served on truffle potato purée with sautéed vegetables, gravy and cranberry coulis. The sauce alone is exceptional.
Where: Couqley, JLT
Contact: +971 4 514 9339,