Fårikål literally means ‘sheep in cabbage’ and the secret to getting this dish perfect is the quality of both of those ingredients. Plain ingredients, excellent quality will make your fårikål the best in town.
Traditionally, fårikål is made in September, when Norwegian shepherds would bring their sheep down from the mountains. Their diet had not just consisted of grass but all the wild herbs, giving them a delicious flavour. Try and get an organic, locally-sourced piece of meat, where you know the sheep have been treated well. As for the cabbage, find one from the market, but don’t be tempted to buy a fancy variety.
2 kg shoulder of lamb or mutton (shank or neck will also do), cut into 3cm slice but still on the bone
2 kg green cabbage
5 tsp whole black peppercorns
2 tsp Salt, or to taste
Boiled potatoes, to serve
- Cut the cabbage into around 15 chunky wedges, down the core. This is important as the core holds the leaves together and will stop the cabbage from disintegrating.
- Pour the water into a large casserole pot, then put down a layer of lamb, fat side down. Then add a layer of cabbage on top and season with salt and some of the whole peppercorns. Repeat this layering process until you have used up all the ingredients, finishing up with a final layer of cabbage.
- Cover, pop on the stove and bring to the boil, then turn the heat right down to a low simmer. Cook for 2-3 hours until the lamb falls off the bone, taking care to ensure the water doesn’t run dry.
- Serve piping hot with boiled potatoes and the juices from the pot poured over the top.