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Sunday, 5 February 2017

Kleftiko (Slow Cooked Lamb, Greek Stylee)

I would like to share one of my favourite dishes. It takes a long time to cook, but it is totally worth it! Kleftiko is a classic Greek slow cooked lamb dish in a tomato based sauce. I tested my recipe on my Yiayia (grandmother) a few times in the years before she died, and despite not being a massive lover of meat, she really enjoyed it.

Before buying a slow cooker recently I always used to do this dish in the oven, covered on a low heat. But since my household addition of a slow cooker, I find it much easier and tastier done this way.

Serves 4, generous portions

4 lamb shanks
2 cans of chopped tomatoes
4 large fresh tomatoes (quartered)
1 large onion (chopped)
3 tsp ground cinnamon
2 cinnamon sticks
Juice and zest from 1 lemon
5 heaped tsp dried oregano
a good pinch of salt
a good amount of ground pepper

In a slow cooker, place on high for about 5 hours. I sear the meat first in a hot pan with olive oil an a dash of cinnamon, to lock in the moisture and flavours.

In the oven, on a low heat- 6 hours. Start at (200 degrees for 1 hour and then lower to 150 degrees for 5 hours). Sear the meat first in the same way as above. Ensure the meat is covered with a oven safe lid or aluminium foil.

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