Barbecued Lamb Shoulder


I’m back in Stuttgart and on Thursday we attended a Wine Fest in Stuttgart Center; thousands of people, really big food and uncorked wine.   This single serving of dessert was astounding!  It tasted like a big donut with creme Anglaise and cherries.  I’m teaching Americans how to ward off evil with the French “finger in the picture” hex 🙂


None of the pictures I took during the fest were good, probably because of the lighting and my delirium tremens from too much cork-less wine.  I ate a lot of big food but it didn’t seem to help.  I guess I should have paid attention to Mad Dog’s incomprehensible (to me) advice on taking pictures in extreme conditions, but it was way too hard 😀


Anyway, we had a good time and I would recommend it to anyone in Stuttgart between August 28th and September 8th.


Two of my guilty pleasures are barbecue potato chips, Lay’s if possible and Cheetos. Sleepless and sweaty in Stuttgart, I wondered how the barbecue flavoring would taste on meat.  I pulled the iPad from under the pillow and did a search for homemade bbq potato chips.  Sure enough, there were zillions of recipes for the spice mixture.  I mentally reviewed the freezers’ contents and remembered a German lamb shoulder that I bought on sale at Fresh Paradise before I left for vacation.


I scored the shoulder and stabbed it all over with a cooking fork like a crazed, cooking psychopath, rubbed it heavily with the spice and refrigerated it for two days.  Why two days?  One would have been enough but we did have to go to the wine fest.


I then seared it, then off flame grilled it for 1 hour.  No it didn’t taste like Lay’s barbecue chips but like savory, tender, barbecued lamb.  Very nice 🙂


Still craving fresh beans, I went to the market this morning wrongly thinking that France and Germany, both being agricultural nations, I would be able to find coco or borlotti beans.  Obviously I wasn’t thinking.  Porsche, Daimler, Mercedes, Merck, Bayer, etc. spells industrial, the heart’s blood of the German economy.  So that’s why.


Still, I asked the lady at my favorite vegetable stall if it was the season for fresh beans.  She frowned, puzzled, then understanding explained that the Germans didn’t do that and pointed proudly at her really big green beans, weighed some out and gave me some summer savory to flavor them.  My husband’s smirking comment:  “These are the kind that you cook until gray.”   Ha, ha, ha, my love, ha, ha, ha  🙁


Anyway, I didn’t cook them until gray but a longer time than I usually cook green beans. They were delicious with shallots, a white bell pepper and lardons.  Perfect with the lamb.

The spice mixture is enough for the shoulder, plus leftovers to store for any other fancy you might have 🙂

Barbecued Lamb Shoulder

2 tbsp chili powder

2 tbsp paprika

1 tbsp sugar

1 tbsp dry mustard

1 tbsp garlic powder

1 tbsp onion powder

1 tsp piment d’espelette

1 tsp cumin

1 tsp black pepper

1 tbsp salt

1 lamb shoulder, 3-4 lbs, fat scored and viciously stabbed all over with a cooking fork.

Mix all the spices together, then heavily rub onto the lamb.  Refrigerate for 1-2 days, then sear on both sides on a hot barbecue grill.  Move the charcoal to one side or, with a gas grill, turn off half the burners, move the lamb to the cold side of the grill,  put the top on, then grill for 45 minutes to 1 hour.

Big Green Beans

1/2 cup lardons or bacon, diced

2 shallots, thinly sliced

1 small white/yellow pepper, diced

1 – 1 1/2 lb big green beans, sliced into thirds

1 tbsp fresh summer savory, chopped



Brown the lardons in a wok, then add the shallots and pepper and continue to cook until the shallots are soft.  Add the green beans and  summer savory, salt and pepper, then stir fry for about 2 minutes.  Add a tablespoon of water, put the top on and steam on a low flame for 15-20 minutes.

Wine suggestion:  Cote de Provence Rose

About cookinginsens

An American living in Burgundy, France
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42 Responses to Barbecued Lamb Shoulder

  1. Mad Dog says:

    Wonderful ingenuity – I’m glad the lamb was successful 😉
    I’ll have a go at a simple camera setting suggestion. On all modern cameras there is a setting called Shutter Priority – it’s normally marked as S on one of the dials. If you turn the dial to S and then turn the shutter speed dial to 60, in reasonable lighting the camera should give you sharp pictures without shake or need to use a tripod. Do remember your normal camera settings before you change it. You are welcome to email me if you’d like more detailed instructions.

    • Thank you Dog. I have a Canon t3i. I don’t see an S.

      • Mad Dog says:

        I looked it up:
        It’s labeled Tv on your camera 😉

        • Okay. We’re going back to the wine fest now. I’ll put it on tv and 60. All results we’ll be your fault 😀

          • Mad Dog says:

            I hope there’s enough light indoors, if not there’s a part 2 to the instructions 😉

            • Don’t try to clean it up now, Dog 😀 I’m going with part 1!

              • Mad Dog says:

                Part one is the best option for outdoors on an ordinary dull day, when you don’t have time to put the camera on a tripod or you want a quick snap before someone moves.
                If you are indoors and the light is low, use part 1 + part 2.

                Part 2:
                This is for camera sensitivity in low light, when you don’t want to use flash. The downside is that there will be more grain in the picture.

                Press the ISO button on top of the camera and turn the dial. For normal pictures outside or still life, set it to ISO 100. For indoors in low light, where you can’t use a tripod, try ISO 400. If it’s still a bit dark use ISO 800. Beyond ISO 800 you would get so much grain that it’s probably not worth bothering, but you can always have a look and see 😉

                Always set the ISO back to 100 after the event.

                If your pictures outdoors on Tv with the shutter set at 60 are too bright (on a sunny day) you can set a faster speed, such as 250, 500, etc. Anything slower than 60 is likely to cause camera shake.

                • You’re going to think I’m really, really dumb. What you mean is use automatic focus. When I tried the settings at the wine fest, I couldn’t focus the camera at all. Roger taught me to focus manually, and I have NEVER used automatic focus, I didn’t even consider it. He also taught me about ISO and thank you for the reminder, I had forgotten 🙂 So, thank you, I learned something today. When in dark places, switch to automatic focus and change the ISO. I will still take manual pictures in controlled circumstances( I like doing it), but using automatic focus would have made a big difference in some pictures I really wanted.

  2. Tessa says:

    That lamb shoulder looks wonderful! I really like your idea of the BBQ chip flavor! Those two bags of chips are my favorites too :). I’m glad that Mad Dog included a quick lesson in the comments on how to photograph in extreme conditions. I always seem to mess up my photos on the fly…

    • Thank you Tessa. Sometimes my photos are okay with handheld camera but if the light is dark, like in a restaurant or if I’m trying to take a posed picture of a person, I think I freak. I’m waiting for Mad to tell me where the S is on my camera 😀

      • Tessa says:

        One of these days I will have the time to take a photography course. I want to learn how to use my camera better. Recently, I took my camera to my husband’s softball game and they talked me into taking a team photo. I was so nervous. It turned out fine but I think that it was pure luck.

  3. Elodie Amora says:

    Hi! I’ve been a silent visitor for a few months now. I live in the east part of France. I love that German dessert, Dampfnudeln. I wrote about it once on my food blog when we went to the Christmas market in Trier, Germany. Anyways, I just want to say how much I love your food blog, especially your posts in France. I get to see other regions of France through your photos and stories. 🙂

  4. The barbecue lamb shoulder looks wonderful, Rosemary! I also have a weakness for Lay’s Potato chips. So thin, so crispy.

  5. Raymund says:

    My oh my, look at that succulent treat!

  6. Oh so yum! How wonderful is this? Thank you so much, really love this recipe!

  7. Amanda says:

    Add usual that looks delicious. A simple yet elegant and timeless meal.

  8. Karen says:

    Yum, we are on the same wave length…I just grilled a leg of lamb. You definitely have to be careful of uncorked wine. 🙂

  9. Paula says:

    I haven’t seen lot of posts, I see you’ve enjoyed a great summer!! Glad for it!!

    This summer we have been in Suttgart, but only a couple of hours, it was on our way to Schwarzwald, and my boyf love cars, rest, you can imagine!

    I love this lamb shoulder!! This summer we have made some on bbq, I dare we hadn’t this spices rub, I’ll save for next time!! My parents will love it!!

    Nice to see you again, it’s funny now I have so many post to read, like a good cook and travel book with you 😉

  10. Love Mad Dog’s instructions – will be giving them a go! I too love potato chips (or crisps to me – a guilty pleasure) but I love lamb shoulder more and yours looks fabulous 🙂

  11. Great post! The lamb looks fabulous and the barbecue rub is a nice one. My guilty pleasures are Cheetos and Corn chips, any type of corn chip. It’s so bad, we don’t buy them as I have no self control. 😮

  12. Look at you doing BBQ leg of lamb. My mom would smoke one every Easter. Nice to see lamb being used. I don’t see it often enough on people’s menus. Nicely done!

  13. I’ve never had BBQ’d lamb but it sure looks like I am missing out!

  14. Jon says:

    Will definitely try this, although I’ll need to replace my Smoky Joe as some neighbors stole mine… BBQ lamb certainly ranks up there! Nice recipe

  15. tayorreo1029 says:

    Reblogged this on … bam .

  16. ihatediet says:

    if it is medium well done its even more delicious.

  17. Deena Gaier says:

    I couldn’t refrain from commenting. Very well written!

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