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Lamb Baked in Yogurt

Lamb Baked in Yogurt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Heat the olive oil and butter in a large, wide pan over medium-high heat and brown the lamb pieces, turning to color them evenly. Add the scallions and cook, stirring, until soft. Stir in the garlic and cook for a few minutes to soften. Add the rice and pour in the wine and water. Cover, bring to a boil, and reduce to a simmer. As soon as the rice has absorbed most of the liquid, season the contents of the pot with salt and pepper, to taste, and remove from the heat.

Whisk the eggs in a medium-sized bowl until foamy. In a separate bowl, whisk together the yogurt and flour. Whisk the eggs into the yogurt mixture and stir in the chopped mint. Season lightly with a little salt.

Spread out the lamb mixture in a casserole dish with a lid or divide evenly between individual ramekins, about 3 inches deep. Spread the yogurt mixture evenly over the meat. Bake, uncovered, until the yogurt is set and lightly browned on top, for 45 minutes. Cover and cook until the lamb is tender, for 45 more minutes. (If using ramekins, check after 25 minutes.) Ten minutes before removing from the oven, sprinkle, if using, with grated kefalotyri cheese. Serve immediately.

Greek Lamb & Yoghurt Pasta Bake

Adapted from a recipe I found in a recent issue of the Australian magazine ‘New Idea’. This recipe is strong on lemon flavouring so if strong citrus flavourings are not your scene, you may like to add &frac12 teaspoon nutmeg to the yoghurt topping instead of the lemon zest. I haven’t yet had the chance to make this recipe, but I didn’t want to risk misplacing it (little chance of that: I’ve adapted it to my liking already!), so I’m posting it here for safe-keeping. I’m absolutely intrigued – and excited - by the idea of a yoghurt topping: a healthier creamy topping! WOW! I’m always keen to double quantities of recipes like this one so as to freeze some dinners both for those inevitably busier evenings and for great take-to-work lunches. Freezing details have been included here. The canned tomatoes I use (Italian) have very little juice. If your canned tomatoes have a lot of juice, you may like to drain them. You can always add a bit of what’s been drained off, though I’m always keen to make some space for a bit of wine!

1. Preheat the oven to 190C. In a frying pan, heat the oil and gently cook the onion until soft, then add the garlic. Add the lamb and fry until browned, breaking up the mince with a wooden spoon.

2. Add the rice, oregano, cinnamon, tomato paste, spring onions and the stock or water, and bring to the boil, stirring. Simmer for five minutes until the rice starts to absorb the liquid.

3. Fold in the spinach and toss for a minute or two until wilted. Transfer the meat and spinach to a lightly oiled baking dish, leaving room for the topping.

4. Whisk the yoghurt with the flour, dill and sea salt until smooth. Gradually whisk the mixture into the beaten eggs until smooth.

5. Pour the yoghurt mixture gently over the meat, and bake for 35 to 40 minutes until golden. Serve hot.

Find more of Jill Dupleix's recipes in the Good Food Favourite Recipes cookbook.

Yogurt Lamb Curry Recipe

Lamb is the most popular meat used in Kashmiri cuisine. Wazwan, a royal feast, which is a multi-course meal spread consists mostly non vegetarian dishes. Most of the dishes are lamb based dishes, chicken is used too. It’s a feast fit for kings and consists of an array of about more than 30-course banquet. Rogan gosh, goshtaba, saffron pulao, kahwa, phirnee being some of the most popular dishes. In Kashmiri cuisine curd is used in most of the dishes, be it for gravy or in marinating. A range of aromatic spices, dry fruits, ghee, saffron, Kashmiri red chilies are used in cooking. This yogurt lamb curry is not really an authentic Kashmiri curry, because traditionally mawal flowers are used in the curry. Since I do not have access to mawal flowers I modified the recipe according to my conveniences.

Serve Yogurt Lamb Curry along with rice, whole wheat lachha parathas or garlic naan for a perfect meal.

  • 70g/2½oz butter
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1.2kg/2lb 12oz boned lamb shoulder, cut into 5cm/2in cubes
  • 4 garlic cloves, grated
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 60g/2¼oz long-grain rice, rinsed
  • 50g/1¾oz plain flour
  • 600ml/20fl oz Greek-style yoghurt
  • 4 free-range eggs, beaten
  • freshly grated nutmeg, to finish
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/Gas 4.

Heat 20g/¾oz of the butter and the olive oil in a large lidded pan over a high heat. Brown the lamb in batches.

Return all the lamb to the pan. Add the garlic, oregano and 200ml/7fl oz water. Bring to a simmer and cook, covered with a lid, for about 45–60 minutes until the lamb is tender.

Stir in the rice, and season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a 3 litre/5¼ pint earthenware or other ovenproof dish.

Melt the remaining butter in a small saucepan, add the flour and make a roux, cook for 2 minutes, then take off the heat. Add the yoghurt and mix well, then return to the heat and cook gently for a couple of minutes. Take off the heat, add the beaten eggs and season with salt and pepper.

Pour the sauce over the lamb and rice mixture, grate fresh nutmeg on top and bake for 40–45 minutes until starting to turn golden-brown.

Remove from the oven and allow to sit for 5 minutes before serving. Serve with a simple lettuce salad.

Recipe Summary

  • 1 quart chicken stock (or low-sodium broth)
  • 2 cups dry white wine
  • 1 cup fresh lemon juice
  • ¼ cup honey
  • 1 teaspoon whole allspice berries
  • ½ teaspoon whole cloves
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander seeds
  • 2 tablespoons smoked paprika
  • 2 tablespoons fresh oregano leaves
  • 2 tablespoons thyme leaves
  • 1 tablespoon whole black peppercorns
  • 2 onions
  • 15 garlic cloves (peeled and lightly smashed seeded and quartered)
  • 3 jalapeños (seeded and quartered)
  • 5 pounds semi-boneless leg of lamb (aitchbone removed) (tied)
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 cups plain Greek yogurt
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup packed cilantro leaves
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • ¾ cup packed parsley leaves
  • ¾ cup packed cilantro leaves
  • ½ cup packed tarragon leaves
  • ½ cup snipped chives
  • 1 jalapeño (&mdashhalved, seeded and very thinly sliced crossw)
  • ½ cup very thinly sliced red onion
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Cooked couscous (for serving)

Preheat the oven to 425°. In a roasting pan large enough to hold the lamb, whisk the chicken stock with the wine, lemon juice, honey, allspice, cloves, coriander, paprika, oregano, thyme and peppercorns. Add the onions, garlic and jalapeños in an even layer. Season the lamb all over with salt and pepper and place it in the roasting pan, fat side up.

Braise the lamb, uncovered, for 45 minutes until it just starts to brown. Reduce the oven temperature to 325° and braise for about 2 hours and 30 minutes longer, until the meat is nicely browned and starting to pull away from the bone. Transfer the lamb to a carving board and let stand for 10 minutes.

Strain the braising liquid into a medium saucepan and skim off the fat. Boil the liquid until slightly reduced, about 10 minutes. Season the jus with salt and pepper keep warm.

Combine all of the ingredients in a food processor and puree until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a bowl.

Combine all of the ingredients in a medium bowl and toss well. Season with salt and pepper.

Cut the strings off of the lamb and carve the meat into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Arrange the lamb on a bed of couscous on a large, deep platter. Drizzle the jus and spiced yogurt over the lamb, top with the herb salad and serve.


Step 1

Combine egg yolks, yogurt, and 1½ cups dill in a blender finely grate in 1 garlic clove and blend until smooth. Set purée aside. Finely chop remaining dill set aside.

Step 2

Melt butter over medium heat in a large skillet. Add pine nuts and cook, stirring often, until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Add dried currants and cook, stirring often, until plump, about 1 minute. Scrape nut mixture into a small bowl season with salt.

Step 3

Wipe out skillet and heat over medium-high. Stir together cumin, pepper, and 1 tsp. salt in a small bowl. Place lamb in pan and use a sturdy spatula to aggressively flatten (like you’re making smash burgers) sprinkle spice mixture over. Cook, undisturbed, until lamb is well browned and crisp underneath, about 4 minutes. Hold back meat and drain off all of the fat. Break up meat into small pieces and mix in reserved nut mixture. Finely grate in remaining 2 garlic cloves and add reserved chopped dill. Cook, stirring, until herbs are wilted, about 1 minute. Set aside until pasta is ready.

Step 4

Meanwhile, cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until 1 minute shy of al dente (pasta will finish cooking in the sauce). Drain pasta and return to pot.

Step 5

Pour reserved purée over pasta and set over medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly, until sauce thickens enough to cling to pasta and just comes to a simmer, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat finely grate zest from lemon half over pasta, then squeeze in juice. Season with salt.

Step 6

Divide pasta among bowls and top with lamb mixture.

How would you rate Spiced Lamb and Dill Yogurt Pasta?

dill-icious! a great complete meal with great flavors. I should use buttery raisins paired with lamb more often! I threw a bunch of kale (chopped) into the pasta water with a few minutes left to add more veg to the dish. Thanks Sohla!

A week after making this, I am still thinking about it. Just absolutely delicious. The freshness of the yogurt and dill really plays well with the lamb. I splurged for pine nuts and I'm glad I did, but I think Sohla's recommendation of almonds as an alternative would work well too (pine nuts are $!) Had leftovers and was absolutely thrilled to eat them the next day. Will add to our regular rotation.

I've cooked a lot of BA recipes and this is my favorite by far! Such a unique, fresh, and flavorful dish that leaves you craving more. Leftovers are good reheated, too! THANK YOU for my new fav recipe, Sohla!

I was really excited about trying this dish, my impression from the recipe photo got me all excited. I followed all the ingredients, but am really not sure where it went wrong. The keyfir made the dill sauce extremely watery, after blending it, it didn't make it smooth at all. I repeated the recipe a week later with yogurt instead of keyfir and the same thing happened? The lamb was amazing, but I really need to firgure out how to get a creamy, green sauce.

Besides having some trouble acquiring this much dill, this is a knock-it-out-of-the-park dish.

Question before attempting this dish: if using dried dill instead of fresh what is the ratio? I can't imagine putting 3 cups of dried dill into this!

While hunkered down during the pandemic we are taking an around the world culinary tour. First of all, we love lamb. Why do so many distain it? Perhaps mutton in their youth. This is a recipe that provides the best of what comfort food has to offer. There is only one small change I would make. The pasta doesn't cook to true al dente in the yogurt sauce so do so in the water. I used golden raisins in lieu of currants and next time will use more. My husband LOVED it so it is a keeper. BTW, reheated the next night and just as good.

Wow, this recipe is a keeper, and I didn't change a thing. Actually, the only thing I would change is the systemic racism that the chef behind this recipe- Sohla El-Waylley- endures at Bon Appetit. I can only hope that justice for Sohla and the BIPOC chefs of Bon Appetit will be as satisfying as this recipe.

Very very good. Only alts I made was a tsp of honey after the lamb crisped, swapped the pine nuts for sunflower seeds as I'm allergic, and added some mushrooms I needed to get rid. As a whole this was delightfully well balanced, though in definite need of some more veggies next time!

This is probably our favorite pasta to make from BA! The sauce is unbelievable and goes so well with the meat. Sohla is right, you can substitute all kinds of things- we tend to use ground pork and add cilantro in addition to the dill. She is truly innovative, our favorite person by far, and deserves only the best!!

This. Is. So. Good. So incredibly satisfying and flavorful and sooooo easy - minimal ingredients, very little prep and little cleanup. I couldn’t find orecchiette at my supermarket, but had pantacce on hand, and it works beautifully. Oh, and for some silly and not bougie reason I only had duck eggs, and LET ME TELL YOU. The sauce! I’m over the moon for this dish.

As I was cooking it, I thought I would like it. Should have trusted my own instincts and adjusted the amount of dill as it is not properly proportioned and completely overpowers the other flavors in the dish.

I made this every week last month. It's one of the most interesting and rewarding things I've cooked in a while, and I cook almost every day. The more raisins the better! I've used parsley and spinch in place of the dill many times. Incredibly helpful that Sohla always lets viewers/readers know what kind of substitutions they can and can't make. Sohla is a true gem at BA and I hope she and other BPOC employees get the fair compensation they deserve.

LOVE the versatility - vegetarian adaptation slaps. Standing in solidarity with Sohla in her demand for the resignation of the editor-in-cheif and equal pay /compensation for all BIPOC in the BA organization. Love your work Sohla!!

So many delicious flavors! Added in asparagus and shiitake mushrooms to the lamb mixture. Used prunes instead of raisins. Will definitely be making this again!


  • For the meat:
  • 1 pound ground lamb (or ground 85% lean ground beef—see note)
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt (or 1 teaspoon table salt)
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons picked fresh oregano leaves (or 1/2 teaspoon dried)
  • 1/2 onion, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 clove garlic, sliced
  • 3 ounces slab bacon (or about 5 slices sliced bacon), cut into 1-inch pieces
  • For the yogurt sauce:
  • 3/4 cup plain, unsweetened yogurt
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 clove garlic, minced on microplane
  • 2 teaspoons juice from 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley or mint
  • To serve:
  • 4 pieces soft, hand-pulled-style pita (not pocket pita)
  • Chopped fresh tomato
  • Finely sliced onion
  • Cubed peeled seeded cucumber
  • Hot sauce

  • 1 pound/500 grams boneless leg of lamb (cubed)
  • 2 cups/500 grams yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • dash salt (to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 3 tablespoons garlic paste
  • 3 tablespoons ginger paste
  • green chilies to taste (finely chopped)
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable (or sunflower or canola oil)
  • 2 medium-sized onions (sliced)
  • 3 tablespoons garam masala (see recipe below)
  • 3 teaspoons coriander powder
  • 3 teaspoons cumin powder
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 1 can/500 gram can diced tomatoes
  • 2 1/4 cups/500 mL lamb stock
  • 3 tablespoons mint leaves (finely chopped)
  • 3 tablespoons coriander leaves (finely chopped)
  • 1-inch piece ginger (julienned)

Mix salt, pepper, yogurt, turmeric powder, half the ginger and garlic pastes, and green chilies together.

Marinate the lamb in this mixture for 30 minutes.

Heat oil in a deep pan and fry onions and remaining ginger and garlic pastes till fragrant.

Add the tomatoes, cumin powder, bay leaves, coriander powder, and garam masala and continue to fry till the oil separates from the mixture.

Add the marinated lamb and cook till most of the liquid has evaporated. Pour in the lamb stock and cook till the meat is tender.

Adjust seasoning if needed.

Garnish with chopped coriander and mint and juliennes of ginger and serve.

Lamb Recipes from Around the World

Ingalls Photography

It’s no surprise lamb is found in cuisines over the world: its rich flavor pair pairs well with a variety of spices, sauces, and cookign styles, making it perfectly at home in kitchens from Greece to Indian and beyond.

Honeyed Roast Lamb with Spinach and Pine Nuts This roast lamb recipe hails from popular establishment Enrique Becerra in Seville, where the lamb is sliced to order and then heated up in a skillet, with an aromatic and indulgent sauce composed of wine and honey. See the recipe for Honeyed Roast Lamb with Spinach and Pine Nuts » Javier Salas Middle Eastern kibbeh is a finely ground paste of bulgur, onions, and lamb or beef, which is formed into patties or balls, filled with coarsely ground, sweetly spiced meat, onions, and pine nuts, and deep-fried. Get the recipe for Kibbeh (Beef and Bulgur Wheat Meatballs) » Todd Coleman See the Recipe Christopher Hirsheimer Belonging to the family of slow, steam-cooked moghul dishes called dum pukht, this lamb is coated in a spice paste made with saffron, coconut, almonds, and yogurt. This pot roast is typically prepared in a South Asian clay pot called a handi. Landon Nordeman Slow-cooking a leg of lamb in wine with garlic and herbs transforms the meat into an ultra-tender entrée that goes marvelously with stewed white beans. Landon Nordeman For this traditional Iraqi-Jewish dish, ground-lamb meatballs are braised in a vibrant beet stew. Andrè Baranowski See the Recipe André Baranowski North African–style lamb sausages are served on a platter with a cool yogurt sauce, chopped vegetables, and flat bread. See the recipe for Spiced Lamb Sausages » André Baranowski A variety of spices flavor this traditional Pakistani rice dish. Todd Coleman Bake these Turkish spiced lamb and tomato flatbreads on a heated pizza stone in the oven so that the crust and topping cook evenly. Todd Coleman This dish calls for slow-roasting lamb over okra, green beans, and eggplant until the lamb is tender and the vegetables have absorbed some of its juices. Todd Coleman These moist lamb pies are popular in Sicily during Easter celebrations. Zoe Schaeffer Lamb shoulder is the ideal cut for this Pueblan-style barbecue. We love this version, which is adapted from Steven Raichlen’s The Barbecue Bible (Workman, 1998), and is served with a refreshing tomatillo salsa. See the recipe for Barbacoa (Chile-Rubbed Smoked Lamb) » Penny de los Santos These spiced croquettes are a classic Middle Eastern snack. Todd Coleman Tender lamb meets sweet, caramelized cipolline onions in this perfumed curry infused with cardamom, fennel, and cumin. Get the recipe » Todd Coleman Cumin- and paprika-spiced kefta (lamb meatballs), baked eggs, and kalamata olives are the hallmarks of this elegant tagine from the Moroccan restaurant Le Timgad in Paris. Get the recipe for Kefta Tagine (Lamb Meatball and Egg Tagine) » Landon Nordeman A thick pistachio puree is folded into a mix of ground lamb and bulgur in these garlicky kebabs. Todd Coleman Grilled red onion aïoli, smashed avocado, and sunny-side-up eggs top these rich cumin-spiced lamb burgers. Mark Roper Robust lamb and onion kebabs steeped in a tenderizing seltzer and vinegar marinade are paired with a sauce of tomatoes, prunes, and herbs in this traditional Russian dish. Todd Coleman Garlicky lamb and rice baked under a thick, tart veil of yogurt is a dish beloved throughout Albania. Ingalls Photography The name of this dish, Arabic for “upside down,” aptly describes the layered one-pot meal of spiced lamb, rice, and vegetables that is inverted before serving. Ariana Lindquist