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Lamb, bacon and lentil braise

  • 30 minutes, soaking time: overnight
  • in the slow cooker low 6-8 hours, high 4-5 hours
  • 4-6
Lamb, bacon and lentil braise

This lamb dish is best cooked on low. The lamb and beans soak up the aromatic flavours of the braising liquid until both are meltingly tender. A short-cut leg of lamb has been trimmed to remove the shank and rump end. It will fit into a mid-sized 4.5-litre slow cooker with ease.


  • 1 cup dried haricot or baby lima beans
  • 1 leek, trimmed
  • 1 short-cut leg of lamb
  • ½ cup puy, brown or green lentils
  • 1-2 stalks celery, finely diced
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and finely diced
  • 1 lean bacon stea, finely diced or 3-4 lean slices bacon, diced
  • 1 cup chicken stock or water
  • 1 large bouquet garni
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme


  1. Soak the haricot or lima beans in plenty of water overnight. Allow 3 times the amount of water to beans. Drain well.
  2. Turn the slow cooker on to low to pre-warm while gathering and preparing the ingredients.
  3. Cut the leek in half lengthwise and wash under a tap to remove any grit that has become trapped in the layers. Trim and dice finely.
  4. Heat a dash of oil in a large frying-pan and, when hot, brown the lamb as well as possible on all sides.
  5. Scatter the beans, leek, lentils, celery, carrot and bacon into the pre-warmed slow cooker. Stir in the chicken stock or water and add the bouquet garni.
  6. Sit the lamb on top of the vegetables, lentils and bacon. Season the lamb well with salt and pepper and cover with the lid.
  7. Cook on low for 6-8 hours, or on high for 4-5 hurs.
  8. Lift the lamb from the slow cooker and place on a warmed serving platter. Cover and set aside to rest. This will ensure the meat is tender when carved.
  9. Stir in the parsley and thyme and season well with salt and pepper. Remove the bouquet garni before serving.
  10. Serve the lamb sliced and accompanied with your favourite seasonal greens.

Cooks Tips

Variations: - Use pancetta in place on bacon steaks. - Use half white wine or vermouth and half chicken stock. - Stir 1 tablespoonful of prepared mustard into the beans and stock before serving. Try a tarragon mustard - it is green, not yellow, and has an intense tarragon/aniseedy flavour.

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