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Bandit’s Lamb

Thieves Lamb ... Bandit’s Lamb


I just had to include a recipe with a name like this, especially as it can be made with lamb or goat. Shoulder and shanks can also be cooked in this way. While rigani is perennially evident in Greek cooking, other herbs could  be used like dried oregano, mint or dill instead. The garlic is optional and thick slices of kefalograviera cheese can be placed on the lamb in place of lemon and bay

Serves 4

Preparation time 10 minutes + 30 minutes standing

Cooking time 2 hours 30 minutes


1 medium lemon, thinly sliced


1 tablespoon rigani

2 teaspoons sea salt flakes

1.5kg leg lamb

6 cloves garlic, peeled thinly sliced

5 or 6 bay leaves

4-5 large sheets good quality baking paper

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil



1. Preheat oven to 160°C (140°C fan-forced). Remove seeds from lemon slices, sprinkle with salt and stand for 30 minutes. Pat dry with kitchen paper.

2. Rub combined rigani and salt all over lamb.

3. Spread out the baking paper sheets, lay lamb in the centre. Lay the garlic slices over the top of lamb leg, then the lemon slices and then tuck the bay leaves amongst the lemon, drizzle with olive oil. Fold the paper over to enclose the lamb, tucking the sides in to ensure no cooking liquid can escape. Tie well with string to secure.

4. Place the packet of lamb into roasting dish. Cook for 2 hours and 30 minutes. Lift the lamb parcel onto serving platter, cut open at the table to serve. The lamb will be meltingly tender and fall from the bone, spoon over the juices from the parcel.

Lyndey’s Note: Don’t use aluminium foil to wrap lamb in, it prevents it browning and the lamb will stew.

Recipe from Lyndey & Blair’s Taste of Greece (Hardie Grant RRP $39.95) and DVD of TV series (

Lyndey Milan OAM aims to inspire, nourish and connect people. A familiar face on television and in print, she has been instrumental in changing the way Australians think about food and wine for four decades via her own nine best-selling cookbooks, nine international TV series and influence as former Food Director of the iconic Australian Women’s Weekly.  She is an award-winning multi-media presenter, MC, speaker, food & wine teacher, consultant, debater, judge and regional Australian specialist who makes numerous TV & culinary appearances. 

With a profile beyond Australia, she is a popular international tour host and will be returning to Morocco and Puglia in 2024. She also works as an enrichment speaker on cruises. 

Lyndey is a key contributor to Selector magazine, writes freelance, has reviewed for the Good Food Guide since 1987. A Councillor of the Royal Agricultural Society of NSW where she was the first female Vice-President.  She is Co-Founder and Patron of Tasting Success, a mentoring programme for female chefs, an Ambassador for the Leukaemia Foundation, Cure Cancer and is active with many other charities.