Roasted Lamb with Artichoke and Sour Cherries

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Roasted Lamb with Artichoke and Sour Cherries

This plate is a great mixture of Mediterranean and Middle-Eastern cuisines. Levant region has beautiful recipes that showcase artichokes and lamb meat. The artichoke’s creamy texture goes great with the gamey flavour of lamb, especially when it is balanced with proper acidity. In the Middle East, Sumac is used to marinade the lamb for that beautiful earthy tartness. In the summer times, I substitute the Sumac with fresh Sour Cherries from farmer’s market to add a little bit of Mediterranean freshness. To top it all using a fresh mint sauce is a great way to finish this lamb dish for balance.

  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 2 people 1x



For the Meatballs:


  • 200 g Minced Lamb
  • 50 g Breadcrumbs
  • 1 Onion (grated)
  • 1 Egg Yolk
  • 1tsp Black pepper
  • 1tsp Paprika
  • 1tsp Cumin
  • 1tsp Allspice
  • ½ tsp Cinnamon
  • 1tsp Salt

For the Artichokes:


  • 4 Artichoke Hearts
  • 2 Onions (finely chopped)
  • 100gr Sour Cherries (pitted)
  • 1tsp Sugar
  • Salt & Pepper (to taste)

For the Mint Sauce:


  • 1 bunch Mint Leaves
  • 3 tbsp Olive oil
  • 2 tbsp Cider Vinegar
  • 1tsp Honey
  • ½ tsp Salt-Pepper


  • First, we will prepare the meatballs. In a bowl, add all the ingredients mentioned above and mix everything well with your hands until the meat has slightly emulsified and has a nice consistency to hold itself. 
  • Kneading it for a few minutes will create the perfect texture. Refrigerate for 10 mins.
  • Now, take the lamb mix and divide it into four artichokes hearts each. Put the lamb on the hearts and shape them to have a beautiful dome fitting to the artichokes.
  • In a steel skillet, sweat the onions on the stove. Add the sugar and season to taste. Put half of the sour cherries and mix well.
  • Add the shaped artichokes to the base of the pan and pour ½ cup of water to create steam.
  • After the water comes to a gentle boil with a lid closed on, put the skillet to 180C heated oven and cook for 20mins.
  • Check the water level according to your pan and the softness of the hearts. If they are soft, open the lid and mix the onions and cherries to a paste-like consistency.
  • Add the rest of the cherries and roast it all for 10 more minutes to get a good colour at 200C.
  • Prepare the easy mint sauce by blanching the mint first. Dry them and chop them finely. Mix it with the rest of the ingredients mentioned above. 
  • Take the skillet out of the oven. Plate it by putting the sour cherry paste on the bottom. Place the artichoke on top of it and arrange a few whole sour cherries around. Top it with the mint sauce and enjoy this great dish.


  • Author: Emrecan Ilarslan
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Method: Roasting and Steaming
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean
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