Recipes: Mutton

Adapted Recipes

Shoulder of Mutton stuffed with Oysters

Adapted from Edgeworth 1860
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours


  • butchers twine
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 2 lbs shoulder of lamb or mutton

Oyster Stuffing

  • 8-12 oz cooked oysters boiled or stewed
  • 2 cups hard bread coarsely chopped
  • 8 tbs butter room temperature
  • 2 tbs fresh majoram
  • 2 tbs fresh oregano
  • 3 egg yolks
  • zest of one lemon


Preparing the stuffing

  1. Combine oysters, bread, butter, majoram, oregano, and lemon zest in a large bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  2. Mix egg yolks into stuffing. The final mixture should be moist and pliable. If mixture is dry and crumbles add in more butter and egg yolks.

Stuffing the Shoulder

  1. Clean and prepare the shoulder for stuffing.
  2. Stuff the lamb shoulder. Using the twine, tie the roast at one inch intervals. Place it into an oven safe roasting dish. Heavily season the exterior of the shoulder with salt and pepper.

Roasting the Shoulder

  1. Preheat oven to 425F.
  2. Roast at 425F for half an hour to brown the meat.
  3. Reduce heat to 325F and cook for another 30-60 minutes depending on preferred meat temperature.
  4. Rest at least 20 minutes before carving.

Original Recipe

Rub a leg of mutton all over with salt, and put it on the spit to roast with a clear fire, basting it with its own gravy. When it is nearly done, take it up with a sharp knife make incisions all over it, and stuff an oyster into every hole. Then put it again before the fire to finish roasting. Before you serve it up, skim the gravy well, and give it a boil with a glass of red wine.

Roast Leg of Mutton

Adapted from Brooks 1897

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 50 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 20 minutes


  • 1 cup bread crumbs or crushed rolled cracker
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp thyme, marjoram or sage
  • 1 egg, optional
  • 1 diced onion
  • 2 lb leg of mutton
  • 1 tbsp butter, room temperature
  • 1 tbsp flour
  • milk or water
  • butcher's twine
  • salt
  • pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 425F.

Preparing the Filling

  1. Sweat the onions with butter until translucent.

  2. Mix crumbs, salt, pepper, and herbs in a large bowl. Add in the onions. Slowly add in milk or water until the filling is moist and pliable.

Filing the Leg

  1. Excise the bone from the leg.

Season the interior of the leg with salt and pepper. Fill the cavity with the filling

  1. Using twine tie the leg at one inch intervals and place into an oven safe roasting dish.

Roasting the Leg

  1. Roast at 425 for half an hour to brown meat. Baste once 15 minutes through.

  2. Turn down temperature to 325F and roast for another half an hour.

  3. Remove the roast from the pan and let rest for 20 minutes.

Making the Gravy

  1. Pour off the fat from the pain and stire in 1 tbsp of flour.

  2. Add 1 cup of boiling water.

  3. Bring mixture to boil and simmer until thickened.

  4. Strain and serve on the side.

Original Recipe

1 c. rolled cracker or bread crumbs, ½ tsp. pepper, 1 tsp. salt, milk or water 1 tsp. thyme, marjoram or sage, 1 egg, if desired, 1 tsp. onion, if liked. Remove the bone form a leg of mutton and mix the filling as directed for Rolled Steak. [Prepare filling as follows: mix together the crumbs, salt, pepper and sage; scald the onions to soften them and to remove the strong flavor, and add them to the crumbs. Moisten with milk or water.] Sprinkle the cavity with salt, fill it and sew. Dredge with salt, pepper and flour. Place the meat on a rack in a roasting-pan, and bake in a hot oven, allowing 20 min. to a pound. Baste once in 15 min. When done, remove the strings and put the meat on a hot platter. Pour off the fat from the pan, stir 1 tbsp. flour into the browned sediment, add 1 c. boiling water and boil 5 min. Strain and serve as a gravy. Chickens and other poultry may be filled and roasted as directed. Beef is usually roasted without filling. (Brooks 1897:24-25)

Fried Loin of Lamb

Adapted from Carter 1796


  • 3/4 lbs loin of lamb, boned and trimmed, cut into thin steaks
  • 1 tbsp butter, room temperature
  • 2 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 red wine
  • 1 tbsp nutmeg
  • 3 cups homemade lamb stock chicken stock may be substituted
  • 1 tsp flour
  • salt
  • pepper


  1. Rub the loin with half of the butter. Mix the nutmeg and the garlic and rub them into the loin. Season well with salt and pepper.

  2. In a large non-stick skillet over medium high heat add the remaining butter. Sear the cut loin for 3-5 minutes on each side. Remove and let rest for at least 10 minutes.

  3. Wipe off the fat from the skillet. Return to the heat adding in the wine. Cook until the liquid has reduced by half taking care to scrape the bottom. Add the stock and simmer until the liquid is reduced by half again.

  4. Make a light roux with the flour and the remaining butter. Add to the stock and let simmer and thicken. Season with salt and pepper.

  5. Lightly pour the gravy over the loin and serve.

Original Recipe

Cut the loin into thin steaks, put a very little pepper and salt, and a little nutmeg on them, and fry them in a dish before the fire to keep hot; then for Sauce, pour out the butter, shake a little flour over the bottom of the pan, pour in a quarter of a pint of boiling water, and put in a piece of butter; shake all together, give it a boil or two up, pour it over the steaks, and send them to table. Note. You may do mutton the same way, and add two spoonfuls of walnut-pickle. (Carter 1796:44)

Dressed Lamb's Head

Adapted from Carter 1796 and Sanderson 1846


  • 1 lamb head, skinned and cleaned fresh, never frozen
  • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 3/4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1.5 tbsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • 1/2 sage leaves, finely chopped


  1. Remove the eyes and tongue.

  2. Boil the head and tongue, in salted water for 10 minutes.

  3. Remove the head and leave the tongue simmering for 30 minutes longer. Remove and run under cold water, removing the outer tongue skin.

  4. Return the tongue to the mouth. In a bowl combine half the butter, half the olive oil, red wine, oregano, sage leaves, garlic, salt, and pepper. Pour over the head and brush into the various cavities while the head is warm. Marinate for at least 1 hour turning over occasionally to spread the marinade.

  5. Bake in a preheated oven at 325F for 1.5 hours basting and turning over the head every 30 minutes, taking care to conserve the juices.

  6. Remove from oven and prepare the broiler.

  7. In a bowl combine the remaining butter, oil, some garlic, and salt. Pour half this mix onto the head.

  8. Return the head to the broiler at least 5 inches from the flame for about 5-10 minutes. Turn the head over and pour the remaining mixture and brown under the broiler. Let rest 5 minutes and serve.

Original Recipe

Boil the head and pluck a quarter of an hour at most, the heart five minutes, the liver and lights half an hour. – Cut the heart, liver and lights, into small square bits, not bigger than a pea. Make a gravy of the liquor that runs from the head with a quarter of a pint of the liquor in which it was boiled, a little walnut liquor or catsup, and a little vinegar, pepper, and salt. Then put in the brains and the hashed meat, shake them well together in liquor, which should be only just as much as to wet the meat. Pour all upon the sippets in a soup-dish; and, having grilled the head before the fire, or with a salamander, lay it open with the brown side upwards upon the hashed liver, &c. Garnish with sliced pickled cucumbers, and thin slices of bacon broiled. (Carter 1796:63-64) Boil them two hours; before boiling, take out the brains, wash them clean and free from all skin; chop about a dozen sage leaves very small, tie them in a small bag, and let them boil half an hour, then beat them up with pepper and salt, and half an ounce of butter; pour it over the head, or serve in a boat or tureen; skin the tongue before serving.

Stewed Neck of Mutton

Adapted from Carter 1796 and Leslie 1840

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 30 minutes


  • 2-3 lbs lamb neck bones
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and halved
  • 1 medium carrot, diced
  • 1 small shallot, peeled and diced
  • 2 rosemary sticks
  • 1 bundle of sage
  • 1 bundle of thyme
  • 2 cups canned tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 1/4 tsp sugar
  • 1/4 cup lamb or chicken stock


  1. Preheat oven to 300F

  2. Season the neck bones with salt and pepper

  3. Heat butter in thick bottomed casserole dish

  4. Brown the neck bones, ensuring any fat is well rendered.

  5. Add the garlic, carrot, shallot, tomatoes, wine, stock and sugar, ensuring that the neck bones are evenly covered. Place rosemary, thyme and sage atop. Cover with the lid or foil.

  6. Cook for two hours and then remove the lid or foil.

  7. Cook further for another hour.

  8. Remove from the oven and remove the lamb from the pot and allow to come to rest. Simmer the remaining sauce and reduce by half.

  9. Serve over hard bread or root vegetables.

Original Recipe

Bone the joint to be stewed. Break the bones and put them in a saucepan, with a sufficient quantity of whole pepper, salt, and mace, to make it relish; also one nutmeg bruised, one anchovy, and one middling turnip; a little faggot of sweet herbs, two middling onions quartered, a pint of ale (and as much red wine, if you like it) two quarts of water, and a hard crust of bread. Stop it close, and let it stew five hours. Then put in the mutton, and let it stew two hours. (Carter 1796:57)

Stewed Mutton Chops

Cut a loin or neck of mutton into chops, and trim away the fat and bones. Beat and fatten them. Season them with pepper and salt, and put them into a stew-pan with barely sufficient water to cover them, and some sliced carrots, turnips, onions, potatoes, and a bunch of sweet herbs, or a few tomatas. Let the whole stew slowly about three hours, or till every thing is tender. Keep the pan closely covered, except when you are skimming it. Send it to table with sippets or three-cornered pieces of toasted bread, laid all round the dish. (Leslie 1840:110)

Broiled Lamb Cutlets

Adapted from Leslie 1847

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes


  • 1.5 to 1.75 lb 8 rib rack of lamb, trimmed and cut into 4 double chops
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 tsp fresh rosemary, minced
  • 1.5 cups fresh breadcrumbs
  • 2 tbsp butter, melted
  • 1 tbsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup minced flat leaf parsley
  • 3 large garlic cloves


  1. In a bowl whisk together oil, 3 tbsp lemon juice, garlic, mustard, rosemary and parsley. Season lamb with salt and pepper.

  2. Soak lamb in marinade ensuring coverage. Cover and refrigerate for at least a day, turning the lamb every so often.

  3. Preheat the broiler. An outdoor grill may be used.

  4. Remove lamb chops from marinade and transfer to a baking sheet. Broil chops 2 minutes per side.

  5. Mix 1 tbsp lemon juice, breadcrumbs, nutmeg and the remaining butter. Press breadcrumb mixture atop each chop, dividing equally.

  6. Broil the chops without turning over until breadcrumbs are golden brown. About 4 minutes each side for medium-rare lamb.

  7. Serve with mashed potatoes garnished with parsley.

Original Recipe

Cut a loin of lamb into chops. Remove all the fat, trim them nicely, scrape the bone, and see that it is the same length in all the cutlets. Lay them in a deep dish, and cover them with salad oil. Let them steep in the oil for an hour. Mix together a sufficiency of finely grated bread-crumbs, and a little minced parsley, seasoned with a very little pepper and salt, and some grated nutmeg. Having drained the cutlets from the oil, cover them with the mixture, and broil them over a bed of hot, live coals, on a previously heated gridiron, the bars of which have been rubbed with chalk. The cutlets must be thoroughly cooked. When half done, turn them carefully. You may bake them in a dutch-oven, instead of broiling them. Have ready some boiled potatoes, mashed smooth and stiff with cream or butter. Heap the mashed potatoes high on a heated dish, and make it into the form of a dome or bee-hive. Smooth it over with the back of a spoon, and place the lamb cutlets all round it, so that they stand up and lean against it, with the broad end of each cutlet downward. In the top of the dome of potatoes, stick a handsome bunch of curled parsley. (Leslie 1847:58-59)