Umami Recipes
Umami Recipes

Mains - non veg

Braised Lamb Shoulder With Dried Chilies and Dates Recipe

8 servings


5 hours 30 minutes

total time


8 dried guajillo chiles (about 1 1/2 ounces; 45g total)

3 dried morita chiles (about 1 ounce; 30g total)

1 tablespoon cumin seeds

2 teaspoons coriander seeds

1 pound tomatillos (about 8 medium tomatillos; 450g), husked and quartered

4 medium cloves garlic (about 1 1/2 ounces; 45g total)

8 pitted dates (about 2 ounces; 60g total)

1 1/2 tablespoons (18g) Diamond Crystal kosher salt, divided; for table salt, use about half as much by volume or the same weight

6 pounds (2.7kg) bone-in lamb shoulder roast, with fat cap

Warm tortillas or rice, for serving

Diced cucumbers, diced avocado, sliced radishes, and/or Cotija cheese, for serving (optional)


Preheat oven to 325°F (160°C) and adjust rack to lowest position. Using kitchen shears, cut guajillo and morita chilies into strips, discarding all seeds and stems. Toast chilies in a dry skillet until fragrant. Transfer to the canister of a blender.

In the same dry skillet, toast cumin and coriander seeds and add to the blender canister.

Add tomatillos, garlic, dates, 1 tablespoon (12g) salt, and 1/2 cup (120ml) water to the canister and blend until smooth. Set chili purée aside.

Using a chef's knife , deeply score the fat cap on the lamb shoulder, cutting all the way through the fat but not into the meat below. Season lamb with remaining 1/2 tablespoon (6g) salt and place in a Dutch oven, fat side up.

Pour chili purée over lamb shoulder, spreading it to coat evenly. Cover Dutch oven and bake until lamb is tender and falls easily from the bone, about 5 hours. Carefully lift lamb from Dutch oven and transfer to a work surface. Skim fat off the sauce in the Dutch oven. Pull meat off bones, discard bones, then return meat to pot and mix with sauce. Serve with tortillas or over rice, with garnishes such as diced cucumbers, diced avocado, sliced radishes, and/or Cotija cheese, as desired.


Serving Size

Serves 6 to 8


498 kcal

Total Fat

15 g

Saturated Fat

5 g

Unsaturated Fat

0 g

Trans Fat



122 mg


1275 mg

Total Carbohydrate

45 g

Dietary Fiber

5 g

Total Sugars

9 g


45 g

8 servings


5 hours 30 minutes

total time
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