When my Guyanese friends speak about Pepperpot, there’s a certain passion and pride that lights up their faces. And to be honest, I know why. The deep rich flavors of this meat-packed dish is simply outstanding and very comforting. And while most pepperpot includes an assortment of meats, in this version we’ll stick to using lamb alone.
3 lbs lamb (with bones)
3/4 cup cassareep
2 cinnamon sticks
3 pieces of orange peel (1 inch each)
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
4-8 sprigs thyme
2 scallions (chopped)
3 cloves garlic
1 medium onion (diced)
2-4 wiri wiri peppers
Notes! Please watch the video below to follow along as much more is discussed there. Optional ingredient includes, 2 bay leaves, 1 star anise and a thick slice of ginger. I like pepperpot spicy so I used 8 fine wiri wiri peppers, should you not be able to source those peppers, any spicy pepper (in the amount you can handle) will work. If doing this recipe gluten free, please go through the full list of ingredients to ensure they meet with your specific gluten free dietary needs.
With my lamb washed and drained, it went into a deep pot (no oil) on a medium/high flame. Cheap cuts of lamb can be fatty, so I do it this way (as explained in the video) to render out and remove some of that fat. The goal is NOT to brown the meat.
After about 6 minutes, turn the flame down (so you don’t get burned) and tip the pot to allow for the fat to accumulate. Remove the fat and discard (NOT down your sink).
Turn the heat back up to medium and add all of the other ingredients mentioned. Stir well, then cover completely with water and bring to a boil.
After coming to a boil, reduce the heat to low as we want this to slowly cook on a simmer until the lamb is tender. I did place the lid on slightly ajar.
Depending on how old the animal was when the meat was harvested, it can take between 2 hours and 15 minutes to 3 hours.
It took just over 2 hours of cooking slowly and me stirring every 30 minutes or so for the lamb to be tender. At this point you’ll taste for salt and adjust to your liking. The gravy’s thickness is a personal choice, so if you want it thicker, cook with the heat raised a bit. However be mindful that as this lamb pepperpot cools, it will thicken further.
In the video I explained how at the end, I used a spoon to scoop out even more fat out of the dish. All you need now is some homemade plait bread to break and dip in this wickedly delicious gravy.