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Sunday roast: Breast of lamb stuffed with bacon and apricots recipe

Photo of roasted breast of lamb, rolled and stuffed with apricot stuffing

Economical and tasty roast stuffed breast of lamb – Sunday lunch special

We have got a craze for breast of lamb at the moment. It’s such an economical joint and it’s a great opportunity to play with store cupboard ingredients for the stuffing.

I usually use fresh breadcrumbs in stuffing but I had such a lot of dried breadcrumbs I though I’d whiz them up in the food processor and give them a go instead. I also left out onions to speed up the preparation.

The result was lots of texture and a satisfying crunchiness that balanced the sweet melt in the mouth meat. Following Nigel Slater’s tip that bacon and lamb flavours go so well together, I cubed some of our home cured streaky and added that to the dried apricots.

As we are thinking budget when it comes to meals, I boycotted the wine and just used cold water to bind the mixture. I tossed in a decent amount of fresh parsley and some chopped cashews. We are eating loads of parsley at the moment, I can’t wait for my parsley bed to get going again.

The secret of the dish is in the slow cooking. It needs a good 2.5 – 3 hours in a slow oven. The other must is to cover the ends of the joint with foil so that the stuffing remains moist and doesn’t burn. In fact I’m thinking of pot roasting my next experiment in the slow cooker.

The result was a classy dish that wouldn’t break the bank if you have friends round for supper.

Breast of lamb stuffed with bacon and apricots recipe
Recipe Type: Main
Author: fiona Nevile
Prep time: 15 mins
Cook time: 3 hours
Total time: 3 hours 15 mins
Serves: 6
Economical, delicious and easy. Breast of lamb is a great choice. Rolled and stuffed it is even better.
  • 1 breast of lamb 500g (1 pound) or bigger
  • For the stuffing:
  • 100g of apricots chopped
  • 50g of cashews chopped
  • 200g of dried bread crumbs
  • 100g of smoked streaky bacon cubed
  • 4-5 tblsp of water
  • Lashings of ground black pepper
  • Two large handfuls of parsley
  • 3 average garlic cloves
  • A pinch of salt
  1. Preheat oven to 220c (200c fan)
  2. Prepare the ingredients for the stuffing. Mix well and spread along the centre of the strip of breast of lamb.
  3. Roll gently and secure with a butcher’s skewer.
  4. The stuffing will want to squeeze out so place the meat in a boat of kitchen foil and cover the sides of the joint with two circles of foil to prevent the stuffing from burning.
  5. Put the joint into your preheated oven for 30 mins .
  6. After this turn the oven down low 160c (140c) fan. Remove the joint and pour over 50ml of cider/white wine or water).
  7. Return the joint to the oven for 2.5 hours. Basting occasionally.
  8. Let the joint rest under some towels for half an hour whilst you prepare your vegetables.
  9. Pour the juices from the joint into an ice cold pyrex jug and pop it into the fridge for a few minutes for the fat to solidify.
  10. Pour off the meat juices, add a little liquid and simmer the juice to thicken and reduce it.

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  1. aunty mary

    I have found that this will work well cooked the day before.In the slow cooker.

    Separate the meat from the liquid and Leave both to go cold so that the joint is easy to slice and the fat can be taken off the top of the stock.

    Then put the joint back together. Tie it long ways and brush with oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper. (some times the joint will fit into a loaf tin)

    A half an hour or so in a very hot oven will crisp the outside and the slices can be carefully placed on a hot plate.

    Another variation on the theme is to use the slices in a yorkshire pudding batter to make a sort of toad in the hole.

  2. Julie Taylor

    It is nice done is a slow cooker but not very crispy, so might be work popping in oven just to crisp up before serving. My daughters both loved it with gravy,veg and mint sauce. it is a bit greasy but yummy … blow the diet for one night!

  3. Has anyone tried breast of lamb in the slow cooker yet? I thought about it but then I saw on another cooking forum that it’s too fatty a cut of meat to done in it?

    Any suggestions?


  4. Great recipe – had it for Christmas dinner. Made too much stuffing, so used it for burgers (beaten egg to help bind it) for lunch on Boxing Day. Ta.

  5. Fiona Nevile

    Hi Kate(uk)

    Thanks so much for leaving the rice stuffing recipe – sounds really delicious. I love the cobination of apricots and lamb.

    Hi Serena

    Thanks for dropping by. This is well worth making if you can find breast of lamb.

  6. Looks good, will have to try it!

  7. Kate(uk)

    Yes, just do the usual pilau rice thing ( bit like risotto), cook some chopped onions in ghee until caremelised nicely, wash the rice, add it to the onions with some cinnamon and any other fancied spices, and stir and cook just in the fat and onion juice for a few minutes then add the water/stock and dried fruits-sultanas, chopped apricots, whatever you fancy- or grated carrots, put a lid on the pan and stir and check water levels until rice is done.It should be cooked to sticky stage so it works as a stuffing, add chopped almonds or other nuts. Apricots are particularly good with lamb.I was searching for lamb breast last week just so I could do this with it: with a spicy crust on the outside of the lamb it is just lovely!

  8. Fiona Nevile

    Hi Amanda

    It was good. Can’t wait to try it in the slow cooker.

    Hi Kate(uk)

    Nice twist. I’ve ordered a couple this week so I’ll try that out. I am assuming that the rice is cooked beforehand?

  9. Kate(uk)

    Try stuffing it with Pilau Rice- it is scrummy!

  10. Sounds great. I like the idea of doing it in the slow cooker too.

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