Smoked American Lamb Khao Soi

Day PartDinner
Menu PartEntree
Cuisine TypeAsian

Chef Thomas Pisha-Duffly
The Honey Paw
Portland, Maine

When it comes to menuing lamb, high-end operators often default for chops, legs and similar expensive cuts, while lower-budget spots may offer ribs and ground lamb meatballs. But there are plenty of cuts in the middle that can be parlayed into appealing dishes. At The Honey Paw in Maine, chef Pisha-Duffly smokes whole lamb shoulder and braises it with Asian ingredients, including tamarind, lemongrass, turmeric and Thai bird chilies. The result is a melting pot with a profusion of flavors. The addition of coconut milk adds richness to the soup-stew mixture, which is served over noodles.


2 lb. whole lamb shoulder
1 tbsp. chopped ginger
1 tbsp. chopped garlic
1 tbsp. thinly sliced lemon grass
1 tbsp. chopped shallots
1 tsp. shrimp paste
2 qt. lamb or chicken stock
½ cup tamarind pulp
1 tsp. ground turmeric
1 cup fish sauce
1 cup palm sugar
1 tbsp. chopped Thai bird chili
2 cups coconut milk
Salt, to taste
3 cups cooked egg noodles
Sliced scallions, fermented mustard greens and fried shallots, for garnish


1. Smoke lamb shoulder for 2 hours or sear all sides over medium heat until golden brown.
2. In large saucepot, sweat ginger, garlic, lemon grass, shallot and shrimp paste until brown and soft.
3. Add lamb into the pot; cover with stock, adding water if needed. Over high heat, heat to boiling. Reduce heat to a low simmer. Add tamarind, turmeric, fish sauce, palm sugar and chilies. Cover and cook over low heat for 3 hours, until lamb is falling off the bone.
4. Remove lamb from liquid and pull off the bone; chop into small pieces. Add lamb pieces back into the broth; stir in coconut milk and salt to taste. Remove from heat and reserve.
5. Measure out one-third the cooked noodles; fry in a little oil until crispy. 
6. To serve, ladle lamb mixture over remaining cooked noodles. Top with scallions, fermented mustard greens and fried shallots. Top with crispy noodles and serve.

Photo courtesy of American Lamb Board

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