Whole roasted sheep

Wife told me once of eating sheep in Saudi Arabia.

It was roasted and served, head, hooves, and all, crouched on a huge basin. The carcass was stuffed with all kinds of spices, including cardamom, cumin, caraway, cloves, coriander, paprika, turmeric, black pepper, and chilis. The skin was crisp, the meat finger-picking soft and finger-licking juicy.

The sheep lay on a bed of rice mixed with whole olives, cardamom, saffron, turmeric; ringing the basin were roasted onions, tomatoes, eggplants, zucchini. There were lemon wedges that you picked up and sucked, to take away the gamy flavor.

Afterwards was a sweet baklava-like desert, phyllo pastry layered with honey and chopped pistachio, and a pot of mint tea. Tony Bourdain again devoted an episode to this dish in his show "A Cook's Tour"--copycat.


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