The Best End is the rib section of the lamb, from where the sought after Racks of lamb are cut. The meat is excellent, moist and tender with fine, sweet flavours. The fat that is covering the ribs will be trimmed parallel to the eye muscle. A French trimmed rack has the meat and fat covering the ribs removed, exposing the bones that can be decorated with white, frilly paper hats once cooked. Larger 7-bone Racks serve 3 people, whilst smaller 4-bone Racks make an exclusive meal for two. The Cutlet is a single bone rib.
The impressive Crown of Lamb is the pinnacle of the butcher's craft and is made by tying two French trimmed Racks together in a circle, which can be stuffed with herbs and vegetables or seasoned Lamb Mince stuffing. The equally impressive Guard of Honour is made of two racks sitting side by side with interlocking bones.Best End Of Lamb Cuts
The breast or flank meat is more fatty and tough and often used for inexpensive mince. Rarely offered as boned and rolled roasting joint, breast is mainly used for stock.
Between loin and leg is the chump or rump, a leaner cut that is best cut into smaller portioned roasting joints. Chump portions are very popular in the restaurant kitchen and are best served pink.Lamb Chump Cuts
A roast Leg of Lamb is a one of the best loved Sunday meals in the UK. The leg meat is rich and full in flavour, with little fat. The Carvery Leg of Lamb has the bone removed, but the shank still attached. Gigot Chops (or Leg Steaks bone in) are Steaks cut from the Carvery Leg, with the centre bone sawn trough. Boneless Gigot Chops are cut from the boned leg. A boned and rolled Leg of Lamb is easier to prepare whilst still full of flavour and succulent and makes and excellent roasting joint. Diced Leg of Lamb meat makes wonderful casseroles and stews. Minced Leg meat makes excellent, lean mince.Leg Of Lamb Cuts
The most tender part of the lamb that supplies lean cuts that are full of flavour and suitable for roasting and frying. Lamb saddle, boned and rolled is the double loin still joined together and makes an excellent roasting joint. Luxurious Lamb Noisettes are cut from the boneless single loin, trimmed and rolled with a covering of fat. Valentine Steaks are cut from the boneless saddle, split into two single loins, partially sliced and opened to give a double size surface (butterflied). The highly sought after Lamb Chops are cut from the bone in single loin, whilst the Barnsley Chops are cut from the double loin. These smaller cuts are best fried or grilled.Lamb Loin Cuts
An inexpensive cut from the neck end, Scrag is tougher and more fatty than other lamb cuts and requires long, slow cooking. Either sold on the bone or chopped and diced for stews and casseroles.
Lamb Shoulder is not as tender and lean as leg, but a slow roast shoulder is worth every effort. The whole bone in shoulder is ideal for entertaining a bigger group, although not easy to carve. No such problems with the boned and rolled shoulder, which can also be cut into small Mini Shoulder joints. Diced Lamb shoulder can be used in casseroles and stews. The cut off knuckle end of the shoulder is the Lamb Shank. Ideal for slow cooking and braising it offers rich, full flavours for very good value of money.Shoulder Of Lamb Cuts
The Middle Neck offers good value for money and is rising in popularity. Middle Neck Fillets have very good flavour and are best braised or stewed to allow the layer of fat running through it to melt away and release the beautiful sweet, rich flavours.Middle Neck Cuts