Shoulder of lamb with pistou

I bought a whole shoulder of lamb, which is a lovely joint because it has more fat than the leg and requires a longer cooking time which means that the meat is more tender and full of flavour.

I made a paste with salt, pepper, crushed garlic, chopped rosemary and olive oil and rubbed this all over the meat and roasted it, surrounded by whole Charlotte potatoes for about two and a half hours in a Mark 6 oven.

To accompany this, we had carrots that were glazed in Guerande butter, some rocket and pistou, which is a Provençal version of pesto made by whizzing up garlic, basil leaves and olive oil in a blender.

We drank a nice bottle of red Côtes du Ventoux, the 2009 Ventoux VMV Elite from the Cave des Vignerons du Mont Ventoux, a rich wine made from Grenache and Syrah. This is an appellation that has improved dramatically over the last dozen or so years and the wines are well worth looking for if you are in the region.

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