Slow roasted lamb, fried salt bush, braised leeks + walnut gremolata


1 large lamb shoulder
12 very small leeks
2 tbs honey
1 head garlic
1 bunch flat leaf parsley
20 walnuts
1 lemon
1 sprig sage
extra virgin olive oil
Tasman Sea Salt
1 bunch fresh salt bush
cotton seed oil for deep frying

The day before…

Pre-heat your oven to 110 degrees.

Place the lamb shoulder on the bone into a deep oven dish, add 500 ml water and two cloves of the garlic.

Season the lamb with a little salt and wrap very well with three layers of foil, shiny side down.

Place into the oven for 14 hours, over night is best. After that time, remove the pan form the oven and allow it to cool to room temperature without removing the foil to trap in the moisture.

When the lamb is cool use your hands to pick the meat from the bone removing any fat and blood vessels you find, try to keep the meat in reasonably large pieces. Keep all the liquid from the pan too and set both the meat and the liquid aside in the fridge.

For the leeks

Trim the green top and roots from the leeks and wash them well.

Place your largest pan on the stove on high heat and place the leeks in the pan. Do not add anything else at this stage. Roll the leeks over until they are darkly coloured on all sides and remove the pan from the heat.

Allow the pan to cool a little before you add the honey, 3 smashed cloves of garlic and a little splash of water. Place a lid on the pan and return to a medium heat and allow the leeks to cook with the lid on until they are tender. Taste them for salt. If your pan is too hot when you add the honey it will burn so be careful.

Leave the leeks in the pan with the lid on and set aside

For the walnut gremolata

Crack the walnuts and remove any husks. Keep the shells aside they’re good for smoking things with another time

Finely chop the parsley, sage, two cloves of garlic and the nuts and place into a bowl. Add the zest and juice of the lemon, add a good slug of olive oil and salt to taste, set aside.

For the saltbush.

Pick the leaves from the stems and give them a good wash and dry. Place a large pot on the stove and add a litre or so of cottonseed oil. Place it on a high heat and bring up to 150 degrees. I would recommend using a thermometer for this as it can be dangerous.

In small batches carefully add the leaves. Gently move them around in the oil using a slotted spoon. When they stop sizzling scoop them out onto paper towel and season with a little bit of salt.

You should be able to find salt bush anywhere along the southern coast of Australia but if you live in the north or center, substitute the salt bush with sage leaves and follow the same method.

To assemble…

Heat a large pan on the stove to hot. Add a little oil and add the cold lamb chunks. You want to get it crispy and golden so you may need to do this in batches or on the flat plate of your barbecue on high. Season with salt and turn the pieces over until they are golden on all sides. Place onto a clean kitchen towel to drain.

Place the leeks pan onto the stove on a low heat until the leeks are hot.

Bring a small amount of the lamb roasting juices up to boil in a small pan.

Distribute the leeks over four plates (don't serve the garlic) and add a small amount of their honey liquid.

Add the lamb pieces and a ladle of the braising juices.

Spoon some gremolata over the meat and sprinkle with the salt bush.