1. Nathan Ellis says:

    Hi, is there any rule of thumb when cutting a lamb forequarter with foreshank on to yield the square cut shoulder?

    • John says:

      Hi Nathan and thanks for stopping by my site and for your question.

      If I understand what you are asking, you wish to know where to cut the shank off to leave a nice sized square cut shoulder that has ample meat on it. When we remove the shank we generally cut a finger width back from the elbow of the shank. I hope that makes sense. We slice straight through with the meat saw leaving a small amount of breast bone attached to the shank. Hence squaring the shoulder up.
      If we wanted to cut the shoulder into chops, what we used to sell as Fore Quarter Lamb Cutlets, we continue cutting the shoulder for 3 chops in the same direction and then we spin the shoulder 90 degrees and then cut another 4 or 5 chops off the rest of the shoulder, depending on how thick you cut the chops of course, and you will have a small remainder of shoulder left that has a big chunk of fat with a gland in it that is not saleable as a chop/cutlet. We trim the meat off the waste piece for sausages.
      For FQ Cutlets, we roughly get 7 to 8 chops/cutlets out of the Square Cut Shoulder. Three with a little round bone in it that are oval in shape and the rest with rib bones and vertebrae bone that are sort of triangle in shape.
      If you leave it whole, it make a perfect slow roasting piece that when cooked at low temperature for a number of hours just falls apart and is very tender.
      I hope that helps and if not just let me know…. Cheers John

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