Top 5 things to look for when choosing lamb

  1. The flavour of lamb improves immensely if it is hung – ideally for about a week.
  2. When buying lamb, look for meat that is brownish pink with a layer of creamy white fat. Avoid lamb that is grey in colour, excessively bloody or has very yellow greasy fat. The age and breed of animal can make colour vary. Rare lamb breeds or older animals tend to have more deeply coloured flesh.
  3. Flavour: Some cuts of lamb have more gamey flavor than others because of their overall fat content. If that flavor isn’t to your liking, avoid cuts from the shoulder, shank and leg. This includes shoulder chops, bone-in or boneless leg of lamb, and stew meat. Instead, look to leaner cuts like rib chops, loin chops and rack of lamb, which have less fat and taste sweeter.
  4. Lamb bones should be pink in colour. The rib bones from the middle of the carcass are good examples of this. Known to the butcher as ‘cherry ribs’, they are bright pink when the lamb is young. As the animal gets older, the bones lose their pinkness and become whiter.
  5. Look for joints that are plump and nicely rounded with an almost dry skin, but not dried out or patchy from over-exposure.
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