Lamb is used around the world for countless amazing recipes. When it is labeled as "spring lamb", it means that it came to market in the spring and summer, which are considered the seasons of fresh lamb. In many places, however, it is available year-round with a label "spring lamb", which does not always mean that it is fresh.
Lamb is meat from young sheep that are less than one year old. Usually, it is available in different forms, including shoulder, neck, chest, loin and rump. Moreover, many shops sell it ground, ao it can be used for burgers, meat rolls and sauces.
Currently, the most common species in the world - sheep began to grow in the Middle East and Asia more than 10, 000 years ago. As a source not only of food but also of textiles (wool), sheep were introduced to and quickly became popular in other regions of the world.
Lamb is very widespread in Turkey, Greece, New Zealand, Australia and the Middle East.
Composition of lamb
Lamb meat is a source of vitamins of the B group, especially vitamin B2, B3, and B12. It is rich in phosphorus, zinc, iron and magnesium. Lamb meat contains a high percentage of useful proteins. With only 120 g of lamb, you obtain 40.8% of your daily value of vitamin B12. Lamb has 2 to 3 times less fat than pork and its cholesterol is four times less. Furthermore, it contains phosphorus and vitamin PP. Overall, the vitamins in sheep are as man as in pork and beef, but iron is 30% more than in pork.
Selection and storage of lamb
- Buy lamb whose flesh is firm and slightly pinkish. The remaining fat around the meat should be white, not yellow.
- Lamb is prone to rotting and must always be kept in the fridge or freezer. Fresh lamb can last in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
- If you store lamb in the freezer, it will last six to nine months, if ground- about 3-4 months.
The most delicious meat is from young lambs aged up to 18 months, castrated lambs that are unsuitable for breeding. The meat of nursing sheep that are not older than 3 years is also nice. It is characterized by bright red color, having white fat and being flexible. You'll know old meat by its dark yellow fat red meat. It's tough meat is best used for grinding. Fresh lamb is checked by pressing a finger - the pressure should form a hole in its surface, which, however, is quickly recovered.
Lamb can be fried, baked or stewed. Roasting is a method of cooking, which does not add any liquid to the meat when cooked. Therefore, best suited for grilling are the most delicate parts of the lamb - chops, sirloin and leg. Suitable for steaming are the neck, abdomen and shoulder. Mutton is most commonly made from the leg.
Lamb has a very strong flavor, so there is no need for too much tampering. Lamb goes best with oregano, mint, marjoram, lemon peel, coriander, cumin, thyme, rosemary, and last but not least - garlic. Before tampering, the meat should be cleaned of excess fat and membranes. The selected spices are mixed and rubbed well into the meat. The seasoned meat is packed in foil and stands overnight to allow it to absorb the spices.
Another, a perfect way to flavor lamb is larding - a method in which the tip of the knife makes small slits in the meat and putting pieces of garlic and fresh herbs inside.
Lamb meat may be seasoned with various spices according to taste of a person, but one thing is very important - it should not be salted previously, except just before baking. Otherwise, dry it.
The temperature of roasting lamb is determined by how much fat is in the meat. Fatty meats are baked at 170 degrees to melt the fat and the meat slowly becomes more juicy. A dry piece is baked at 220 degrees for about 15 minutes, then reduce oven to 175 degrees and finish baking.
When frying lamb cutlets, they fold up, making it difficult to brown the meat evenly. To prevent unpleasant folding, pre cut the loin in several places.
Lamb can be eaten both hot and cold.
A few quick tips on how and where to use it
- With lamb mince, make great burgers.
- Dip lamb fillets in marinade of red wine, garlic and rosemary.
- You can serve lamb with yogurt mint sauce made from yogurt, a few leaves of mint and garlic.
- Add vegetables to your favorite lamb and you can make great dishes.
Benefits of lamb
- It contains zinc for proper functioning of the immune system. Lamb is a good source of zinc - a mineral which affects many fundamental processes, perhaps the most important is its effect on the immune system. Furthermore, zinc helps to stabilize blood sugar levels and is necessary for our senses of taste and smell. Especially important for men is that it cares for the health of the prostate and bones.
- Contains B vitamins for energy and cardiovascular protection. Meat products such as lamb, are good sources of vitamin B12, which supports the production of red blood cells and protects us from anemia, allowing nerve cells to function properly.
- Protects us from Alzheimer's and other related advanced age diseases. We know, however, that red meat (like lamb) is a source of saturated dietary fat and cholesterol. These two components are associated with the development of certain diseases, including some cancers and heart disease.
Dangers of lamb
Lamb is also among the foods containing purines - people having problems with the consumption of foods rich in purines should avoid intake of lamb.