Lamb Cut

Characteristics

Cooking Methods

The leg of lamb comes from the hind quarter of the lamb. The leg may be a whole leg with sirloin attached, partly boned or a center cut roast. The classic leg of lamb is the most versatile cut as it can be rolled and tied, butterflied, boned, cubed (for kebabs) or prepared whole. The leg, with little surrounding fat and minimal fat inside, can easily be trimmed to you specification. The meat is tender yet firm and is suitable for a variety of cookery. It is economical cut for entertaining and great for leftover. Lamb legs will serve at least six, sometimes more.
  • Roasting

  • Broiling (cubed meat)

  • Barbecuing

The loin of lamb comes from the middle, lower section of the rear quarter. The loin is usually divided into loin chops and lamb tenderloin. A lamb loin can be boned, rolled and tied or cut into loin chops. This jewel of the lamb is very tender, and cooking time should be minimal.
  • Roasting

  • Broiling

  • Pan Frying

The rack of lamb comes from the front/middle section of the lamb. Rib chops are individual or double chops from the rack. The rack is from the beginning of the lamb saddle through the full eye muscle (one of the premium parts of the lamb suitable for quick cooking to maximize the tender, juicy qualities of this cut). A rack can be frenched (removal of the fat tissue between the bones), capoff (removal of the fat cap) or fully denuded (all fat removed).
  • Broiling

  • Pan Frying

  • Roasting

  • Grilling

The shoulder of the lamb, derived from the front quarter, is the most economical cut. It is most suitable for long, slow, moist cooking to tenderize it. Quite often the shoulder is cut into shoulder chops. Lamb stew or ground meat is suitable for casserole or lamb patties, and often comes from the shoulder.
  • Braising

  • Stewing

  • Pan Frying

Lamb shanks come from the latter part of the leg and are best roasted or braised to elicit the juices from the bone. Shanks are almost always cooked in liquid, at length, until the meat starts separating from the bone. Although long slow cooking is a must, the twin rewards of flavor and unique taste are more than justified.
  • Stewing

  • Braising