How to cook Lamb Tails / Skaapstertjies

This is one of those recipes where so many people will say their recipe is better! Traditional Karoo Lamb Tails. For many, though, its easier to steer clear instead of trying it. We hope this simple recipe will give you the courage to give an old South African Karoo favourite a try.

The cut is very bony, with plenty of fat. The meat is quite tough so needs some cooking before grilling. You simply have to use your hands and fingers to truly enjoy this delicacy.

There are so many variations to this, the main thing here is boiling and then grilling/braaing/frying.

Click here to purchase Karoo Lamb Tail

How to cook Skaapstertjies / Lamb Tails

Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time1 hr 15 mins


  • 1 kg Skaapstertjies Lamb Tails
  • 1 Bay Leaf
  • Salt and pepper
  • Your favourite basting sauce optional


  • Use a pot big enough for the Lamb Tails to fit in with water
  • Bring the water to a boil – just a gentle boil, and add the bay leaf
  • Add the lamb tails, close the lid and let it cook for about an hour – roughly.
  • The time may change, but after 45 minutes check by pushing a piece to the edge of the pot and see if it bends easily. If yes, you can remove the pot from the heat.
  • If you only cooking 500g Lamb Tails then the cooking time will be less.
  • Just before the end put the grill on in your oven.
  • Remove the lamb tails in a colander – try and remove as much water as possible from the meat.
  • Season with Salt and pepper and give it a shake in the colander – water will still come off.
  • This is where you can experiment to your heart's content! Use your favourite basting sauce, chili sauce, mustard, there are no rules here – experiment and find your favourite sauce
  • Depending on the sauce being used, you can either baste now and place it under the grill, or place it under the grill and then baste near the end
  • Store bought sauces generally have sugar in and if you grill it for too long it will burn quickly
  • Keep an eye on it, and remove when done to your likeness
  • Enjoy – it really is the ultimate definition if finger licking good!


As mentioned, this is just the basics and there are many variations. The main thing is you get to enjoy it!



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