WAITANGI  LAMB

waitangi_day

Get your butcher to bone the shoulder for you then stuff it with this lovely scented stuffing.  This is traditionally served in our house on February 6th (Waitangi Day -the day the Maoris signed over sovereignty of New Zealand to Queen Victoria in 1840).

Let us know how you get on!

200g chopped dried apricots

1 small onion

3tbsp butter

4 slices stale bread crumbed

2 tbsp chopped fresh thyme

1 shoulder or leg of lamb boned (keep the strings)

2 tbsp olive oil

Roast potatoes and kumara * (sweet potatoes) to serve

*few things will make a kiwi pine for home more than a roast Kumara, - a variety of sweet potato that grows well in the Northland region in the North Island of New Zealand.  However, after extensive research we believe we have discovered the closest match that is readily available in the UK!  Sainsburys sell a sweet potato variety called Bush Bok, which they sell under their Taste the Difference range.  Unlike the orange fleshed examples that we tend to find in the UK, this is pale gold and retains its potato-like texture after roasting.  They are delicately sweet, with a delicious nutty flavour that goes so well with lamb - they are great in curries too. 

Cover chopped apricots with boiling water for a fee minutes to soak while you heat the oven to 200c, gas mark 6.

Chop the onion finely and cook gently in a small pan with the butter.   Remove from heat .  Drain the apricots and in a bowl mix with the onions, breadcrumbs, herbs and seasoning.  Spread over the unrolled lamb.  Re-tie as neatly as you can. 

Place meat in roasting tin and brush well with some oil. Add salt and pepper.  Cook until the juices run clear, about 1 hour 15 minutes. Rest in a warm place for 20 minutes while the stuffing settles.  Serve in generous slices with the roast veg , savoy cabbage and a minty gravy. 

Why not go all the way and follow with a pavlova decorated with kiwi fruit!!!

Serves 4-6 .

For a variation, try adding some sautéed pancetta and grated fresh root ginger to the stuffing mixture.  The ginger adds a little bite if you're worried about the sweetness of the sweetness of the apricots.

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