Neil Perry's braised lamb, peas and preserved lemon

Neil Perry
Neil Perry's braised lamb, peas and dried dried lime.
Neil Perry's braised lamb, peas and dried dried lime. Photo: William Meppem

This braise comes together over about three hours, but is incredibly simple to prepare.


3 tbsp olive oil 

3 small or 2 large onions, roughly diced 

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper 

1kg boneless lamb neck fillets sliced into 2.5cm pieces 

2 heaped tsp turmeric 

1 tsp mild chilli flakes 

2 generous pinches of saffron threads 

1 heaped tsp ground cinnamon 

150g tomato paste 

3 preserved lemons, cut into sixths, pith removed 

1 cup frozen baby peas 


1. Place a large heavy-based saucepan over a medium heat, add olive oil, onion and sea salt and cook until onion is softened. Increase the temperature to high, add the lamb and fry the meat for about 5 minutes, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon. 

2. Stir the turmeric and chilli into the meat to give it a good, even coating. Do the same with the saffron and cinnamon, then add the tomato paste and give it all a good stir. 

3. Add the lemon to the mix, and enough cold water to just cover the lamb in the pan. Stir well, then reduce the heat to very low and slow-cook for 1½ hours. 

4. Add peas and cook for a further 1 hour. 

5. When ready, the meat should be tender and the peas dark and sweet. Add a good grind of black pepper and serve with steamed rice or rice pilaf.