It’s almost considered criminal to live in Australia and not cook regularly on a barbecue. It’s part of our heritage; part of our life style. When the weather warms up, we get out side and cook. It’s a fabulous thing.
Any occasion can warrant the excuse for a barbecue. Kids birthday – yep barbecue…Get together with friends, time for a barbecue…It’s too hot to cook in the house, crank up the barbecue…
There were a number of years there were I didn’t own a barbecue (shock horror). I had to get my fix of barbecued foods at other peoples houses. This was so un Australian of me. Then, I was given a barbecue as a gift. It was no Kmart job either. It was one of those small yet stylish type barbecues that runs on charcoal, or gas, or both. The gas element is great for when you’re in a hurry, and the slower method of cooking with the charcoal delivers a flavour that just can’t be matched on any indoor stove. I feel complete.
But let me tell you about these tasty lamb skewers. They have become my favourite.
You’ll need some preserved lemons.
Preserved lemon and lamb go together like presents and Christmas. The other special ingredient I’ve used in the marinade is Lemon Myrtle. Have you heard of it? It’s a native Australian bush herb. It’s fairly pungent, yet delicate in it’s lemon scented flavouring, which also highlights hints of lime.
Truth be known, this lamb was only marinated for 3 hours. It most certainly can be marinated over night, and if I wasn’t trying to feed my husband’s work friends, who conveniently popped in that day, as well as get a shot of the lamb while the light was still good, I would of left the lamb to marinate longer.
I often serve lamb skewers with yoghurt sauce. On this occasion I snipped fresh mint from the garden, roughly chopped it, grated a cucumber and squeezed the excess water from it, and added it to the yoghurt with extra virgin olive oil, black pepper and sea salt.
Lemon myrtle lamb skewers
800g free range lamb shoulder (ask your butcher for a lean piece)
1 preserved lemon
2 tsp ground lemon myrtle
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 cup fresh oregano
1 tbsp rice bran or olive oil
Cracked black pepper
12 bamboo skewers
Dice the lamb into 3cm pieces. Remove the pith of the preserved lemon and discard the pulp, keeping only the rind. Roughly dice the rind and place in a food processor with lemon myrtle, garlic, oregano and oil, blitz till well combined. Pour over the lamb, gently massage it into the meat, and set aside to marinate in the fridge for 4 – 24 hours.
Soak 12 skewers in cold water for 15 minutes (this helps stop the wood from burning).
Pre heat a charcoal barbecue. Skewer the lamb evenly between the bamboo skewers. Season both sides with sea salt and cracked black pepper. Cook the lamb over a medium heat, for 8-10 minutes, turn regularly.
Set the lamb aside to rest for 5-10 minutes before serving. Serve lamb skewers with minted yoghurt and your favourite salads.