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pasta with lamb and artichokes
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5 from 25 votes

Whole-wheat pasta with lamb and artichokes from Sardinia

This mouthwatering recipe for lamb and artichokes with pasta is perfect for family occasions and Easter. It's pretty easy to make and full of authentic Sardinian flavours.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian, Mediterranean, Sardinia
Keyword: artichokes, authentic Italian pasta recipe, Easter recipe, lamb, lamb ragu, organic pasta, Sardinian recipe
Servings: 4
Calories: 650kcal
Author: Jacqueline De Bono


  • 320 g pasta such as spaghetti, tagliatelle etc (12oz) I used tumminia spaghettoni
  • 400 g boneless lamb (14oz) Shoulder is good. I cut the meat off neck chops and used the bones to make stock
  • 2 lemons
  • 4 fresh globe artichokes outer leaves removed
  • 2 garlic cloves peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 glass white wine
  • 1 cup stock chicken or veg stock is good. I made lamb stock
  • salt for pasta and to taste
  • 1 handful fresh parsley chopped
  • black pepper to taste
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

For lamb stock (if making)

  • 1 carrot washed and cut in half
  • 1 celery stalk washed and cut in 3 pieces
  • 1 onion peeled and cut in half
  • 1 bay leaf
  • lamb bones


  • Cut the lamb's meat into small cubes and keep aside. (I used neck chops and made stock with the bones)
  • Clean the artichokes by removing the outer leaves and the inner beard, cut them into thin slices and place them in a large bowl with the juice of 1 lemon, so that they do not blacken.
  • In a large frying pan or skillet, heat the olive oil and add the peeled and chopped garlic cloves.
  • Once the garlic has softened a little, add the chunks of lamb and brown for a couple of minutes, turning often.
  • Season with salt and pepper , add the artichokes and cook over high heat for a few minutes.
  • Add the white wine and leave the heat high until the alcohol evaporates.
  • Add I cup of stock or hot water, cover and cook over a low heat for about 20 minutes.
  • In the meantime, pot a pot of water on to boil for the pasta. Add salt once it starts to boil and bring to the boil again.
  • Squeeze the juice from the second lemon and grate the rind to make a teaspoon of lemon zest.
  • Add the lemon juice to the meat sauce. If necessary turn the heat up to reduce the sauce if it is too liquid. Add some of the fresh parsley to the sauce and mix it in.
  • Cook the pasta slightly less than al dente according to the instructions on the packet. Save a cup of the cooking water and drain the pasta. Then add it to the pan with the sauce.
  • Mix everything together carefully so the pasta doesn’t break and the let the pasta finish cooking in the sauce. Depending on the type of pasta you use this could take a minute or 5 minutes. If the sauce seems dry add some of the saved pasta cooking water. 
  • Serve immediately with a sprinkling of lemon zest and some chopped fresh parsley. 

For the lamb stock

  • just put the lamb bones, carrot, celery, bay leaf and onion into a pot. Add a pinch of salt. Cover with water, bring to the boil and simmer half covered for at least one hour. If the stock has a lot of fat that rises to the surface, you can skim this off before using it in the sauce.


Cooking and preparation times do not include making your own stock.
I would recommend whole-wheat pasta such as tumminia pasta, but you can use whole-wheat or normal and different types such as tagliatelle, pappardelle or spaghetti. Short pasta such as penne would also go well.
This dish can also be served without pasta. The lamb needs to be cut into larger pieces and the artichokes added after the lamb has cooked for an hour in wine and stock.