2

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Help: make lamb taste not lamb-ish

Commented on January 18, 2018
Created June 17, 2013 at 11:18 PM

Heya Hacky folks!

I get a meat share from a farmer at the market. We get beef, pork, and lamb, all cared for in pastured environments and considered "grass-fed."

I love the pork and beef but I'm having a hard time eating the lamb. It just tastes so gamey and different than other meats, particularly the higher fat cuts such as ribs.

Any cooking/marinating tips for these cuts? This week I have goat chops, goat shoulder, lamb kebabs, and goat ribs.

Any help is appreciated, thanks!

B6a195868c7f2aa132551d4648015180

(0)

on January 18, 2018
at 10:16 PM

Wow, there is a plethora of great information here! thank you! However, I am overwhelmed. Please share your ideas for which would work best with nutritionally necessary full fat grass-fed organic ground lamb. I am drastically underweight and absolutely hate the taste. I would like to especially thank elf27 for such a vast array of recipes. Again, thank you!

3ce6a0d24be025e2f2af534545bdd1d7

(26217)

on June 19, 2013
at 12:25 PM

Matt, horses are delicious. I go to Ikea just to get my fill.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on June 18, 2013
at 09:56 PM

Lamb tastes like a sheep smells, disgusting. Grew up raising sheep, never liked their smell, same goes for horses.

463e09e6e28c4f2591aaca88bf0c3cef

(248)

on June 18, 2013
at 07:01 PM

I like to make a simple red wine / apple cider vinegar marinade, with a spice or two added, plus salt and pepper. It really tones down the flavor, enough for me anyway.

8d3cb0be5f31c75a05f853cb3b5c245a

(1601)

on June 18, 2013
at 04:20 PM

sorry the above should say when I MET lamb or the first time I tried lamb, I was in love.

8d3cb0be5f31c75a05f853cb3b5c245a

(1601)

on June 18, 2013
at 04:17 PM

it's funny how some people dislike gaminess. When I have grain-fed meat it doesn't taste right to me and when I meat lamb (in lamb korma I think - another great use of lamb) it was like, "hello where have you been all my life." But I kind of felt that way about indian food -basmati rice, naan, saag paneer - in general. except for their desserts which make me want to pull out my teeth they are so sweet. I love lamb burgers, but I'm pretty sure I didn't make them with grass-fed lamb the last time.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on June 18, 2013
at 04:02 PM

Quite a compendium. Unfortunately my mother didn't know all that when she inflicted lamb burgers on us. Mayo and pickles don't complement lamb the way spices and garlic do.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on June 18, 2013
at 03:46 PM

I forgot about curries...something like a balti would bury the gamy taste. http://www.taste.com.au/recipes/688/balti+curry+lamb

3ce6a0d24be025e2f2af534545bdd1d7

(26217)

on June 18, 2013
at 01:56 PM

The title of this post made me cry.

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on June 18, 2013
at 02:18 AM

i'm not keen on the taste of lamb either, but if you 'do' Indian, try lamb rogan josh, which is a mild curry

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11 Answers

3
8d3cb0be5f31c75a05f853cb3b5c245a

(1601)

on June 18, 2013
at 03:53 PM

i really like nigella lawson's keema: http://www.cookstr.com/recipes/keema

from Nigella:

Keema just means ground meat but the recipe here is for that fabulous sharp and spiky Indian dish of ground lamb with peas that makes a reviving feast in a bowl. I???ve come across versions of this all over the place but the recipe that prompted me, finally, to try it ??? even though what I do differs somewhat ??? comes from Vicky Bhogal???s wonderful book, Cooking Like Mummyji.

For Nigella's recipe, fresh coriander is really key. It's delicious with some rice.

(if you ground the kebabs)

Also, I know japanese really don't like the gamey flavor of lamb, which is why they use soy and mirin.

Here's a recipe for japanese-style lamb:

http://www.cdkitchen.com/recipes/recs/472/JapaneseLamb65847.shtml

2 pounds lamb 1/4 cup Sauce; soy 1 tablespoon honey 2 tablespoons vinegar 2 tablespoons sherry 2 cloves garlic, crushed 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger 1 1/2 cup Stock, chicken; optional

directions Put all ingredients in crockpot and cook all day on LOW.

Finally - for a special treat, I love claudia roden. she is a wonderful cookbook author who traveled around lebanon, syria, morocco, etc. They eat lots of lamb there.

for an idea of the ingredients:

3.75# (1700g) Cleaned and cubed Lamb Shoulder or Leg 2 Medium Yellow Onions (200g each) 20g K??rm??z?? Pul Biber (Turkish, red pepper flakes-we had them, use what you got) 5g Fresh Oregano 5g Fresh Parsley 5g Fresh Ground Cinnamon 5g Fresh Ground All Spice 2g of Grated Nutmeg, fresh is better 38g salt , 5g Fresh Ground Black Pepper

http://www.seriouseats.com/talk/2010/08/lamb-kofte-kebabs-cooking-with-claudia-roden.html

I bet you don't have to follow those spices exactly and could come up with something pretty good.

I also love this recipe for lamb with prunes (a tagine) from her and made it for a party with great success.

http://www.cyber-kitchen.com/rfcj/PESACH-meats/Lamb_Moroccan_with_Prunes_-_meat.html

It's absolutely delicious, and even my friend who didn't like lamb liked it with the prunes and cinnamon and nutmeg!!!! We think of those spices for sweet things here in the US but they are actually really great for meats (although, I don't like those spices in beef).

The couscous that accompanies - 1/2 a stick of butter, cinnamon, and raisins - is obviously not paleo, but if you make it, it's also to die for.

I also love lamb with spicy thai sunbutter sauce: - seared lamb chops with sunshine sauce from clothes make the girl

lamb used for the thai recipe, larb: http://morestomach.com/2013/06/03/lamb-larb/

lamb with fish sauce, cilantro, lime and mint.

Greeks make the best lamb chops with lemon and oregano. They are tendingly, meltingly delicious and the lemon also helps cover the over-gamey taste. http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ellie-krieger/marinated-lamb-chops-recipe/index.html

Or www.kalofagas.ca/2009/08/03/lamb-chops-??????????????-????????????????

I'm jealous! I love lamb.

Also - lamb meatballs with yogurt sauce (can add dill, lemon or oregano, mint, cilantro, and harissa to yogurt)! Yum.

Lamb korma is also delicious:

http://www.food.com/recipe/lamb-korma-124155?layout=desktop

And if you get a leg, I like a cheater's barbacoa - put the leg in the oven at 200F for about 3-4 hours. Then cover it in salsa, radishes, raw onions, lettuce, etc and inside corn tortillas if you want. Barbacoa tacos are delicious.

Finally, some other indian lamb preparations - rhogan josh, lamb vindaloo. If you make vindaloo, try to avoid it being too spicy, and try using coconut milk. but then it's heavy. Good luck! hope this helps no matter your craving.

Also, lamb plus mint jelly is good, even if the mint jelly is all sugar.

8d3cb0be5f31c75a05f853cb3b5c245a

(1601)

on June 18, 2013
at 04:20 PM

sorry the above should say when I MET lamb or the first time I tried lamb, I was in love.

8d3cb0be5f31c75a05f853cb3b5c245a

(1601)

on June 18, 2013
at 04:17 PM

it's funny how some people dislike gaminess. When I have grain-fed meat it doesn't taste right to me and when I meat lamb (in lamb korma I think - another great use of lamb) it was like, "hello where have you been all my life." But I kind of felt that way about indian food -basmati rice, naan, saag paneer - in general. except for their desserts which make me want to pull out my teeth they are so sweet. I love lamb burgers, but I'm pretty sure I didn't make them with grass-fed lamb the last time.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on June 18, 2013
at 04:02 PM

Quite a compendium. Unfortunately my mother didn't know all that when she inflicted lamb burgers on us. Mayo and pickles don't complement lamb the way spices and garlic do.

1
197651282ddd8d675b974ee811d2269e

on June 18, 2013
at 01:35 PM

I use lots of fresh garlic, Rosemary, oregano, and mint, all minced and rubbed all over lamb roasts. Or, you can make slits in the muscle and insert garlic cloves (halved or quartered lengthwise) then rub it with the rest of the herbs. I love lamb prepared this way.

For lamb burgers, I mince lots of garlic, parsley, oregano, mint, and some Rosemary and mix it into the ground lamb. The herbs lessen the lamb taste.

1
Cce42572dbe3567a9b3a485a861ad2c4

on June 18, 2013
at 01:11 AM

Lemon juice (fresh) does help get some of the game taste out.

0
595664fed314cfd5a8e34af0f026ca95

on June 18, 2013
at 11:35 PM

Everyone has good ideas. I just want to mention that you should let the farmer know. It could be strong tasting because the lamb was older or the breed. The farmer can't fix it in the future if they don't know that there's a problem.

0
7c09a44d334ef8a8c7c2644b0b7e1383

on June 18, 2013
at 09:52 PM

Marinate, marinate, marinate. In something acidic!

0
02448f0d01daae6b3d432590775f02e3

on June 18, 2013
at 06:14 PM

When I was in china they always BBQ lamb kabobs, just raw lamb on a skewer cooked over charcoal.

But they put cumin on it and it doesn't taste gamey at all. So, I think as a general rule, cumin takes care of the smell/taste, what you do after is up to you.

0
Bfddc0ab925c8ea0e0c2e87198514907

on June 18, 2013
at 03:35 PM

Mint jelly is fantastic with lamb.

0
6e73a82ebdeab65a9003c765ecd3ff00

on June 18, 2013
at 03:07 PM

Hi! I use rosemary cilantro lemon before I grill my lamb burger. Make sure not to work it too much into a patty. Also keep it medium rare. I noticed the grassfed is way less lamby than storebought.

0
3ce6a0d24be025e2f2af534545bdd1d7

(26217)

on June 18, 2013
at 02:02 PM

You have two options for lamb -- Make it spicy or make it sweet.

Personally I like to do both.

For the kebobs:

Spice Rub Paprika (hungarian smoked is the best) Cumin Mustard Seeds Fennel seeds Salt and Pepper

Toast and grind

Sauce Full Fat Greek Yogurt Oregano Parsley Cilantro (omit if you do not like) Lemon Juice Salt, Pepper

Rub Lamb in spice rub, cook low and slow ~200 for 2+ hours (Sous-vide is better) Throw on grill 500 degrees+ to char outside

Top with sauce and serve

0
9a5e2da94ad63ea3186dfa494e16a8d1

on June 18, 2013
at 02:14 AM

Cutting the fat away reduces the gaminess, as does soaking it in lemon juice and/or cooking it with lemon, garlic, and rosemary.

For some fatty cuts such as ribs you probably can't effectively cut away the fat though.

Grain fed lamb is less gamey but not as good for you, in fact misses the whole point of eating grass-fed red meat, a staple of the Paleo diet.

Eating primarily vegetables, meat, and eggs, your tastes will slowly change. Grain fed meat will taste bland and mushy, and mild gaminess will taste normal. You might develop a taste for organ meats too.

Initially you could avoid the gamier meats, or cut and grind them with other meats that you are more familiar with, don't worry about eating the lamb in the form of hamburgers, meat loaf, or stew. Over time you will develop a taste for it and have no problem with lamb ribs, which I find to be a rare and delicious treat.

0
Medium avatar

(10611)

on June 17, 2013
at 11:41 PM

My worst lamb experience was with lamb burgers. The flavor of lanolin....ecch....bad memory of home-raised lamb scraps.

For tough cuts like the shoulder, stewing/roasting into osso bucco. http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/lamb-osso-bucco-with-rustic-lamb-demi-glace-recipe/index.html Falling off the bone goodness.

For tender cuts like the chops and kebabs, grill hot and fast. I don't see a need to marinate, but a red wine soak would fix some of the gaminess.

The goat ribs might be good treated like a rack of lamb. I've had some bad flavors there though...peel off any silverskin and rub well with garlic would help.

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