Welsh Lamb Karaage with a Japanese anchovy mayo

  • Prep time 4 mins
  • Cook time 3 hrs 25 mins
  • Serves 4


  • 1kg lamb shoulder – ask butcher to remove the skin and truss the shoulder to a nice, evenly shaped piece for you so it cooks evenly
  • 175ml mirin
  • 90ml sake
  • 350ml water
  • 175ml japanese soy sauce
  • 25g soft brown sugar (we use panela)
  • 20g garlic
  • 15g ginger cut into thin slices
  • 1 spring onion cut into 1-inch pieces

For the mayonnaise

  • 23g / 25g egg yolks
  • 5g dijon mustard
  • 19g / 20g rice vinegar
  • 19g / 20g lemon juice
  • 225ml vegetable oil
  • 6g salt
  • 4g MSG
  • 18g white sugar
  • anchovies x2


Don’t pre-season your lamb

Brown in oil in a pre-heated pan, over high heat until golden brown, roughly 3 min per side

Remove and let the pan cool a little until it’s no longer smoking if necessary

Put the pan back on the heat and deglaze with sake and mirin

Add soy sauce, water, sugar

Bring to boil, lifting off any scum

When scum subsides, add spring onion, garlic, ginger

Cook on low simmer with a lid on turning the lamb every 20 minutes or so

It’s ready when it’s wobbly, soft, and is at an internal temp of about 96’c – 3-4 hours, depending on how thick your lamb is

Chill and refrigerate overnight.

Meanwhile, make your mayonnaise by combining the egg yolks, dijon mustard, rice vinegar, lemon juice, MSG, salt, sugar and anchovies in a blender and blend until combined.

With the blender still running, slowly and steadily add the oil until emulsified and combined. Taste and add more niboshi if necessary.

Decant and leave to rest. The mayo will thicken considerably. Add water a little at a time and mix until you get the desired consistency.

Alternatively, and much more easily, you could buy Japanese Kewpie mayo and mix with anchovy


The next day, take your lamb from the fridge and remove the fat that’s solidified on top of the braising liquid,

Remove the lamb and move to a chopping board. Tear or cut the lamb roughly into 2” pieces and emerge in a tub of pre-seasoned equal parts potato flour / corn flour

Dredge in the flour and leave to sit on a pan for 5 minutes for the flour to really cling to the lamb

Meanwhile, pre-heat some vegetable or rapeseed oil to 180c – about 15 mins.

Cooking in batches so as not to crowd the pan, cook each batch the following way:

fry for 2 minutes, remove and set aside for 1 minute

fry for 1 minute, remove and set aside for 1 minute

fry for 1 minute, remove and season with salt and shichimi togarashi

If not eating immediately you can keep it the karaage in a very low (around 100c) pre-heated oven.

Serve with the mayo dip and a beer. Alternatively, for a more substantial meal, serve over rice with shredded nori seaweed on top and lashings of the anchovy mayo!


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