Lamb and the fading flavours of autumn!

Helen Keown


Helen Keown

Lamb and the fading flavours of autumn!

Welcome to all about food. As you can imagine, this time of year is crazy in the Gingergirl kitchen as we send out the last big orders to the beautiful food emporiums that allow Gingergirl produce to sit proudly on their shelves. Ten years on, it is still as much a thrill to see happy customers gather their jams, preserves, chutneys and marmalades, knowing that every spoonful will be savoured.

Now that the big orders have been sent out it’s time to focus on the Gingergirl hampers – prices start from €40 (plus delivery) and the hampers can be viewed on

Ask Gingergirl

Hello Gingergirl,

I really enjoy your column and have tried (with success) many of your recipes. I know you have mentioned that you enjoy cooking with many different cuts of meat and I was wondering if you could suggest a way to cook some of the cheaper cuts of meat.

Thank you in advance,

Maura, Castletroy

Hello Maura,

Shoulder of lamb has been called the poor man’s leg but that’s just nonsense! The shoulder is exceptionally good value and tastes fantastic. Lamb shoulder roasts extremely well and, when roasted at a lower temperature for hours, the meat just falls away from the bone. Capers, anchovies and garlic are good with lamb but for the recipe below Idecided to cling to the fading flavours of autumn!

Slow roast shoulder of lamb

(serves 6)

1 shoulder of lamb on the bone – usually weighs approx 2kg

Olive oil

3 carrots

1 small turnip

3 parsnips

2 onions, quartered

1 bulb of garlic, halved

2 glasses of white wine

A few sprigs fresh rosemary and thyme

500ml of chicken stock

Salt and black pepper

Pre-heat your oven to 160ºc. In a large roasting tin brown the lamb all over until golden, this will add flavour and remove a little of the excess fat. Remove the lamb and discard most of the fat, leaving two tablespoons. Add the vegetables to the roasting dish and brown then add the garlic, herbs, wine and stock. Place the lamb back into the dish. Cover the lamb with foil and place in the oven for 3 ½ - 4 hours. Serve with potatoes.

Christmas nostalgia: pomanders

I have fond memories making these beautiful decorations in the run up to Christmas, I think my mum set me to task so she could have peace to make the Christmas pudding! This is a tradition I have continued with my two daughters and it is one they truly love…

Choose a number of thick-skinned oranges. Roll the fruit in your hands for a couple of minutes to soften the skin. Using a skewer or knitting needle, prick a design on the oranges. Push a clove into each hole. Mix one tablespoon of nutmeg with one tablespoon of allspice and roll your clove-studded oranges in the spices. Place in a paper bag and store in a dry place such as an airing cupboard for three weeks. Once the oranges are firm, shake off any excess spices and arrange in a bowl or glass vase.

Contact Gingergirl


Gingergirl aka Helen Keown is an artisan food producer who produces a range of handmade luxury jams, preserves and chutney’s made from local, seasonal or organic ingredients. Helen’s produce is available nationwide from independent food emporiums and is also available at selected food delis across Europe.

Letters to ‘gingergirl’ c/o The Limerick Leader, 54 O’Connell St. Limerick.

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