Named for her Bree Street deli, Olami by Nirit Saban, R330, Jacana, showcases the same fuss-free cooking that’s put her Cape Town kitchen on the map. Nirit’s recipes are a fusion of flavours inspired by her Libyan, Romanian and Israeli heritage

“The combination of lemon, olive oil and salt is godly in my eyes,” says Saban. “Add garlic, baby onions, bay leaves and white wine and what more could you want? I find lamb to be quite rich and the lemon just breaks that fattiness so beautifully.”

(Serves 6–8)


1 leg of lamb

2kg lamb goulash (cubed stewing lamb)

6T olive oil

1–2 whole garlic bulbs

12 whole black peppercorns

6 bay leaves

3 lemons

2 rosemary sprigs

6 baby onions

5 cups vegetable stock

1T dried oregano

1 cup white wine

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Salt, to taste


  1. To make the marinade, mix together 3 tablespoons of the olive oil, 6 garlic cloves, all the whole black peppercorns and bay leaves, juice of 1 lemon and 1 sprig of rosemary. Massage the marinade into the lamb using your hands, making sure it’s pressed in lightly. Leave to marinate for at least 3 hours or overnight.
  2. When you’re ready to prepare the dish, preheat the oven to 220°C.
  3. Place the marinated lamb in a roasting tray and add the baby onions, the rest of the garlic cloves, olive oil and lemons (juice and peels), stock, oregano, rosemary, the white wine and freshly ground pepper.
  4. Salt the leg of lamb and the goulash chunks very well just before placing them in the oven. If your stock is very salty, adjust the addition of salt, but don’t hesitate to add more. Lower the temperature of the oven to 170°C and roast the lamb for 3 hours.
    5. Let it cool for at least half an hour before eating.

MORE LAMB RECIPES: Grilled lamb cutlets with minty pea puree