Tag Archives: shoulder

Lamb, Hogget & Mutton, what’s the difference?

There is the old saying Mutton dressed up as lamb. have you ever wondered where it came from and how can you tell if you are eating fresh spring lamb or mutton, never alone hogget?

We all know that in today’s language Mutton dressed up as lamb is seen as an ageing woman who is dressed or made up as if much younger.

But if you are buying meat what do these terms mean?

Lamb: “Prime lamb or Spring Lamb”which denotes a lamb at 12 months old. A young sheep under 12 months of age which does not have any permanent incisor teeth in wear.

Spring Lamb is exactly what it says born in spring and ready to eat, all are bred for human consumption. They will taste ‘fresh’ the meat will be pink and moist to cook and eat.

Hogget: is a term for a sheep of either sex having no more than two permanent incisors in wear, or its meat. The meat is still pink but the size is different, it has had a year to grow and roam the paddocks (especially if Grass-fed rather than grain.)

Mutton: a female (ewe) or castrated male (wether) sheep having more than two permanent incisors in wear. The meat is stronger tasting and it has been kept on the farm for approx 12 to 24 months to develop and grow.

Mutton is the choice of many Middle Eastern Countries, it’s bigger in size and stronger in taste.

As we have sheep on the property, I am partial to lamb, it is my favourite cut of meat. I am always astounded at the prices in the supermarkets and the lack of taste if I am in the position to purchase one. This is the difference between grass-fed, where the sheep will eat the naturally occuring grasses to sustain their weight rather than being fed grain to gain weight for sale at a quicker than normal rate.

Some people do not like the smell of lamb, it is very distinctive, but I like nothing better on a Saturday, Sunday or any weekday to put a lamb roast into cook. many families have had lamb roasts family meals and cook to their own liking.

Lamb is easy to cook and prepare, many butchers will de-bone a shoulder or cook a roast with the shoulder in. I prepare ours with rosemary, minced garlic a bit of Virgin Olive oil drizzled over then salt.I place a cup of water in the base of the pan and put the oven on to 180 Celsius.

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Here’s some tips for Lamb Cooking:

Per 500 grams

Cuts: Eye of Loin, Backstrap, Lamb Round, Topside Roasts, Mini Roasts & Lamb Rump

Temp: 220 C or 428 F

Rare: 15 to 20 mins

Medium: 20 to 25 mins

Well Done: 25 to 30 mins


Cuts: Rack of Lamb, Four Rib Roast, Crown Roast


Temp: 200 C or 392 F

Rare: 20-25 mins

Medium: 30-35mins

Well Done: 40-45 mins


Cuts: Loin (boned and rolled) Leg or Shoulder (Bone In), Easy Carve Leg or Shoulder


Temp: 180 C or 356 F

Rare: 20-25 mins

Medium: 25-30 mins

Well Done: 30-35 mins