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How to Prepare Lamb and Goat Meat for Cooking

Sometimes people stay away from lamb and goat because they find them “smelly” or of too strong a flavour. Can’t blame them, really. Ideally the animal’s blood should be allowed to completely drain off before cutting or packaging it but in very many instances lamb and/or goat meat, fresh or frozen, is packaged or sold while still containing blood in it. This is one of the main reasons for strong smell or flavour.

Here’s an easy trick to moderate, or at times: eliminate, the strong smell of lamb or goat meat before cooking.

  • Take a big enough pot and fill it with cold water.
  • Put the meat in the cold water and wait for at least 30 minutes, so that blood seeps out.
  • When ready, drain the the water from the pot and gently squeeze the meat to get rid of water that has seeped into the meat’s fibre.
  • Then, place it on a rack and let it dry for a while, while you’re chopping up and preparing the rest of the ingredients of the dish you’re about to make.


In some Middle Eastern countries the custom is to add salt in the cold water, to purge impurities off the meat faster. Depending on the amount of salt used and the kind of meat you’re using this practice may dry the meat beyond your initial intention. E.g. it might be OK for a stew, but it may not be OK for a roast.

Advice: If you really need to add salt in the cold water then add very little. Try the technique a few times and decide for yourself the amount of salt that’s best for what you’re cooking.

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