Due to the size of a lamb carcase, establishing the various cuts is maybe not as difficult as it may be with beef. However it can sometimes still cause a bit of confusion.Before we look at that though, it is worth looking at the types of lamb that you could be offered. Again, the majority of Scottish sheep are extremely happy living in an extensive environment and the Scottish hills are ideal for this. Fed on grass and heather ground during the summer with a suplemented diet of natural feedstuffs in the winter, this helps to produce high quality lambs.The nice thing about lamb is generally they are not that big and a side of lamb is quite a good thing to get to fill a freezer. New season lambs weigh about 20kg dead weight so there is not an overwhelming amount of meat.
This is where we get some of the more economical cuts from such as the shoulder roasting joints, diced lamb and mince. This area tends not to be as lean as others and the meat requires slow cooking.
Undoubtedly the best cut on the lamb, it is where the prime grilling chops and roasting joints come from. Usually quite lean in spring lamb, this is a healthy option.
Leg / Gigot
One of the most favoured cuts of lamb, leg or gigot (whatever you prefer) is usually sold as a joint for roasting but can also be cut into gigot chops for grilling or frying.
The flank or belly of the lamb, it is usually used rolled and used as a slow cooking joint. In recent years this has become more popular and fashionable.