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Dried Apricot and Lamb Sosaties

Sosaties, South African kebabs, are among the most popular dishes at an braai. Lamb sosaties are the national favorite, but beef, pork and chicken are also common. The meat or poultry is marinated in a spicy curry sauce, then grilled until crisp on the outside but still moist and tender inside. The dish has its roots in Malay cuisine (sosatie comes from the Malay words sate, meaning spiced sauce, and sesate, meaning skewered meat); similar dishes are part of the Javanese fijsttafel.

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  • Servings: 8

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  • 1/2 cup strained apricot jam
  • 1/3 cup white wine vinegar or rice wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons curry powder
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 4 allspice berries
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 1/2 pounds trimmed boneless leg of lamb, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 24 dried apricots (about 7 ounces)
  • Boiling water


  1. In a medium saucepan, combine the jam, vinegar, water, curry powder, garlic, salt, coriander, ginger, cloves, allspice, bay leaf, cumin and pepper. Bring to a boil, then simmer over low heat for 5 minutes. Let the marinade cool completely.
  2. 2. Put the lamb in a large glass baking dish, add the marinade and toss to coat evenly. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours, tossing the meat 2 or 3 times.
  3. In a small heatproof bowl, cover the apricots with boiling water and let plump for 1 hour; drain before using. Soak eight 8-inch bamboo skewers in water.
  4. Thread the lamb cubes and apricots onto the skewers, using 3 apricots per skewer. Return the skewers to the marinade for up to 2 hours.
  5. Light the grill or preheat the broiler. Grill or broil the skewers for 12 to 15 minutes, basting and turning occasionally, until the lamb is still slightly pink inside. Serve at once.

Make Ahead

The marinade can be refrigerated, covered, for up to 1 day.

Contributed By Photo © Simon Watson Published May 1998

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