Easter Al fresco Dining

With Easter just around the corner, along with the first time in months that we can actually gather together around a table – albeit the garden one, thoughts turn to preparations for a tasty outdoor lunch, accompanied of course by a lovely bottle of wine or two to share with friends or family.

Lamb traditionally forms the centrepiece of a family Easter lunch, and is a meat more often cooked at Springtime.   Lamb is delicious slow cooked, lovely and tender pulled apart with a fork, and works so well Spanish reds.

David has a wonderful recipe for tender, garlicky slow cooked lamb, which can be accompanied with a vibrant couscous salad of roasted tomatoes, cucumber and spring onion with a hint of cumin along with a creamy tangy mint yoghurt – best of all it is so easy to serve up al fresco style.

Marinade your lamb (2kg shoulder or leg joint, ideally for at least 3 hours, preferably overnight) in a delicious olive oil mix of garlic, shallots, anchovies, cumin, coriander, rosemary, thyme and mint, along with the sweetness of brown sugar and a zest of lemon.   Bring lamb to room temperature and oven roast in a heavy based tin covered in foil at 140 c fan for five hours, basting every now and then.   Make your couscous with chicken stock, and run through roughly chopped parsley, mint, roasted tomatoes, cucumber and spring onions, and add a hint of lemon zest and cumin to taste.   Blend natural yoghurt and mint dressing to serve on the side.   Add some Spring sunshine, the rule of six, and voila!!

Our Cantor Rojo Tempranillo, Rioja 2018 would be the perfect wine to serve with this dish.   Nigel cleverly secured a supply of this gorgeous wine at a recent auction, and we can’t get enough of it!   Full of rich bursting cherries, it is a vibrant style Rioja with juicy notes of raspberry and plums.   Barrelled for four months in French Oak giving this wine subtle creamy vanilla notes, it has warm nutmeg and toast aromas.   A contemporary, youthful Rioja, with no heaviness this is a lovely red wine to drink with roast lamb and is also great with tuna, tapas or hard cheese.

Sold in our online Tufton Mews shop https://tuftonarmshotel.co.uk/product/cantor-rioja-2018-tempranillo/at £10.95 a bottle or a six-case rate of £62.50

Or why not look at our fantastic special offer Easter Bundle which contains six wonderful wines of a similar quality, including the Cantor Rioja!    A mixed case of three whites and three reds – for ONLY £ 49.30 – (a saving of 15%).  This bundle also includes the deliciously lush and rich Undurraga Gewarztraiminer, a beautiful fresh fragrant wine, which we paired with David’ s sublime oriental Teriyaki Salmon.   Another sure winner for the Easter table. https://tuftonarmshotel.co.uk/product/sale-15-off-easter-offer-mixed-case-of-six-quality-easy-drinking-wines/

Delivery to UK address £9.95 or only £6.99 for orders over £50

(FREE click and collect available to local customers or FREE delivery for orders over £50 to CA16 addresses)



1 shallot
4 garlic cloves
2 anchovies
4 cherry tomatoes
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp coriander seeds
1/2 tsp peppercorns
2 tbsp rosemary
1 thyme sprig
small bunch of chopped mint leaves
70mil White wine
4 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp brown sugar
zest & juice of 1 lemon

Blitz all of above in food processor, pierce lamb with a knife and cover with marinade – leave in fridge for 3 hours or overnight

Take lamb out of fridge at least half hour before cooking, on 140 c fan for 5 hours basting occasionally.   Cover and rest for 30 mins before serving.

75g couscous
1/2 chicken stock cube to make 125 mil of stock
30g parsley chopped
3 sprigs of mint
1 tbsp olive oil
200g roasted cherry tomatoes
1/4 chopped cucumber
pinch of ground cumin
1/2 lemon zest & juice

Yoghurt dressing:
Greek yoghurt with zest of lemon & mint to flavour