Slow Cooked Crock Pot Roman Lamb

Total Time
Prep 1 hr
Cook 8 hrs

An original & very old recipe from Italian friends in Northern Italy - this recipe has been handed down through the ages & is an absolute show stopper for large family gatherings! After the initial browning of the meat, it cooks beautifully in a slow cooker or crock pot, slowly fragrancing the kitchen with a mouthwatering aroma! I have given the quantities that were originally given to me - that is LARGE, up to 14 hungry people! The recipe can be halved for a smaller gathering however. The legs of lamb I used were about 2 kilos each, that's about 4 1/2 lbs.If you are unsure about boning a leg of lamb yourself, ask your butcher to do it for you OR use ready boned & diced mixed lamb meat. Roman lamb is best served with plain steamed potatoes to mop all those yummy juices up with & some fresh green beans. It is also BRILLIANT as a pie filling afterwards - that's if you have any left!

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Bone and dice the legs of lamb into apple size chunks.
  2. Drain & chop the lamb's kidneys if using into small dice.
  3. Heat up small quantities of olive oil and butter together & brown the lamb pieces over a very high heat until nutty brown and completely sealed. DO NOT overcrowd the pan - take your time!
  4. Place the lamb into a crock pot as you brown them.
  5. If using the kidneys, brown them quickly over a high heat too & add to the lamb.
  6. In a food mixer, mix together the following: anchovies, rosemary leaves - not the branches, the peeled cloves garlic, salt & pepper, balsamic & red wine vinegars & cup of water. Blitz until thoroughly blended & smooth.
  7. Add the food mixer blend to the lamb & kidneys in the crockpot. Stir well.
  8. Don't worry if the mixture looks too thick - we still have all the lamb juices to cook into it all!
  9. Cook on automatic for up to maximum time - 8-12 hours OR on high for 4 hours & then low for up to 6 hours. The meat will be meltingly tender & have made a thinner sauce/gravy.
  10. This can be kept warm for up to 2 hours too - and it freezes beautifully!
  11. Serve with fresh rosemary garnish and with simple fresh vegetables such as greens & steamed or mashed potatoes.
  12. Can also be eaten Summer style with fresh crusty bread or pasta and salad.
Most Helpful

This lamb smelled amazing while cooking! It made both my husband and I remark "why don't we have lamb more often??" The answer to that question is the cost - I could only get lamb stew meat at my local market and it was almost $10/lb. But it was worth it as this dish was delicous! I halved the recipe as it was only two of us. I am making shepherd's pie with the leftovers tonight! Based on other reviews I used only most of a 2 oz can of anchovies but I will use all two oz next time. Halved everything else. I served with steamed potatoes, green beans, salad and a crusty loaf. Thanks French Tart! I can't wait to serve this dish to guests!

Chef Romano-Clarke October 10, 2011

I am so glad I tried this, as it is the first recipe for lamb that I found that It comes out meltingly, mouthwateringly tender...The only reason It did not get 5 stars is that the anchovies seemed to overwelm the lamb. (I halved the recipie and only put in a 2ounce can, but it was still very overwelming, and I love anchovies!!)..Next time, and there will DEFINATLY be a next time, I will probably omit the anchovies and add a sliced up lemon instead....Thanks for a whole new way to cook lamb...

Princess Flowerbreath February 13, 2007

I had messaged French Tart about clarification with lamb quantities. With her feedback and instructions my SO and I proceeded to make this! We used 3 lbs of lamb, from the leg, cut into approximately 3 inch chunks. Kept the ratios of everything else the same and didn't change anything else. <br/><br/>This smelled wonderful cooking over night. The most "difficult" part is searing the lamb bits in the pan as it is a bit time consuming. I think you could skip this step but it adds a little bit of texture and flavor if you do the searing. This is an intensely flavored meal, with tender, falling apart lamb. This is perfect served over plain white rice and with a crisp side salad. I am echoing other reviews and think the anchovies (although I LOVE anchovies) could be scaled back a teeny bit. Regardless, this recipe is a keeper.

PKG October 15, 2013