Crisp bites of juicy lamb with a punchy dressing
1 lamb belly or breast, boned and trimmed
1 onion, roughly chopped
1 carrot, roughly chopped
1 celery stick, roughly chopped
1 leek, roughly chopped
1 bay leaf
1 sprig of rosemary
100g plain flour, seasoned
3 eggs, beaten
250g panko breadcrumbs
Rapeseed oil, for shallow frying
For the dressing:
1 tbsp mini capers, chopped
1 tbsp chopped anchovies
1 tbsp chopped parsley
1 shallot, finely chopped
6 tbsp mayonnaise
2 handfuls of watercress
A little olive oil
A few radishes, sliced
Begin by rolling and tying the lamb, then braise it by covering it with water and adding the chopped vegetables, bay and rosemary, and simmer for 2 hours until tender. Ensure the lamb is left to go cold in the stock, as it needs to take on all the lovely flavours of the aromatics.
Once cool, remove the string and cut the lamb into slices about 1-2cm thick. Dredge the discs of lamb in the seasoned flour, then the egg wash and finally the breadcrumbs, until completely coated. It’s a messy job; use your left hand for flour and egg wash and your right for the breadcrumbs.
To make the dressing, add the capers, anchovies, parsley and shallot to the mayonnaise and mix well. Check the seasoning and add a spritz of lemon juice if needed. Toss the watercress in a little olive oil.
Heat the rapeseed oil to about 165C in a deep frying pan and fry the crumbed lamb until golden brown. This should take a few mins on both sides. Remove and pat dry on kitchen paper.
To serve, arrange the crispy lamb on a plate with the watercress salad, add a dollop of dressing and top with a few slices of radish. Finish with lemon wedges and a sprinkling of coarse sea salt.
Recipe: Neil Forbes