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Lamb Palaver

Matt Russell


Chalé Sauce
  • 1 (14-ounce) can tomatoes or 9 ounces fresh tomatoes
  • 2 red bell peppers
  • 2 tablespoons tomato puree
  • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 (2-inch) piece fresh root ginger, grated (unpeeled if organic)
  • 1 red Scotch bonnet chile, deseeded
  • 1 tablespoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 3 cloves garlic (optional)
Lamb Palaver
  • 1 (1-pound) bone-in leg of lamb
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed and finely chopped
  • 1 (1-inch) piece fresh root ginger, grated (unpeeled if organic)
  • 1 Scotch bonnet chile, pierced
  • thyme sprigs
  • 8 guinea peppers, cracked open
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon chilli powder
  • 1 teaspoon extra-hot Madras curry powder
  • 1 red onion, sliced
  • 1 recipe Chalé Sauce (recipe above)
  • 5 ounces baby leaf spinach
  • 3 cups good-quality vegetable stock
  • 7 ounces agushi

Chef notes

This is another variation on spinach and agushi stew, known endearingly as palaver sauce. As with many Ghanaian dishes, arguments rage about how it should be made. The agushi profile has a savory umami quality, with bitter notes, it adds a dairy-free creaminess when cooked and incredible texture. Bone-in lamb works so well with this dish, it's simply got to be tried. You can also make a veggie or a fish version.


For the chalé sauce:

Place all the ingredients in a blender and blend together until you have a fairly smooth paste.

For the lamb palaver:


Place the lamb with the garlic, ginger, chile, herbs, spices and onion in a large, heavy-based saucepan over medium heat. Cover and leave to steam in its own juices for 20–25 minutes heavy-based saucepan, until the lamb juices run clear.


Add enough stock to just cover the meat. Bring to the boil, skimming off any froth that rises to the surface, then reduce the heat and simmer for at least 45 minutes, until the meat is tender and the stock is reduced.


Stir in the chalé sauce and continue to simmer over low heat for 25 minutes. Stir in the spinach.


Sprinkle in the agushi a little at a time, stirring well, until the sauce starts to resemble over-scrambled eggs.