I make no excuse for a 'meat post'. My poor husband has been 'roast free' for four weeks while he was in England so we had to celebrate. Did we really need an excuse for a delicious dinner? For me, this is the only way to cook a leg of roast lamb. It's always a rare occasion so it deserves a little effort, and I mean only a little. As a child I always thought that it was a waste of time to be in the kitchen on a Sunday and vowed that when I was 'grown up' I would spend my Sunday visiting National Trust properties and having lunch in a quaint pub!
For a while, before having children, I managed this. One particular day in the late 80's I made my husband-to-be drive me to Highclere Castle in Berkshire, which was not too far away from us in Hampshire. It's famous now, of course, for being where Downton Abbey
is filmed. I have to say that the castle was not very memorable, although, I am sure it has been revamped now. What sticks in my mind is a roast beef dinner at a lovely pub where the Yorkshire puds came in 'man' size and 'woman' size. Needless to say I had pudding envy! Although it is now traditionally served with roast beef, I believe Yorkshire pudding was originally cooked with the drippings from roasting lamb over a fire, but in our house it was always served with chopped mint from the garden, mixed with malt vinegar and served in a small green china pot with a lid. I wish I knew what happened to that pot...
Take the meat out of the fridge and prepare the garlic and rosemary. Slice the cloves fairly thick and strip the aromatic fronds from the rosemary stalk.
Make slits in the lamb and poke a sliver of garlic and a sprig of rosemary into each hole. Press them in more than the picture as they could burn and will naturally poke out as they cook.
Loosley cover the pan with foil and roast at Gas 5, 180 C for about an hour and then remove the foil for the last 15-30 minutes. This will give you grungy tasty bits on the outside and pink in the middle. Remove from the oven and cover with foil to rest.
The lovely bit is that when you slice it you get a lovely lump of soft garlic and the rosemary really flavours the lamb.
Make onion sauce by making a basic white sauce
. Chop three onions and cover with boiling water. Microwave on full power for 10 minutes and drain the stock for the gravy and add the onions to the white sauce. Pour off the juices from the pan and combine with a tablespoon of my Redcurrant Jelly
and the onion stock to make a delicious gravy. I always add a bit of chopped rosemary too.
I have to admit that studding the lamb with garlic and rosemary was not my idea. I picked it up many years ago from a television programme but I'm not sure who the original chef was. Anyway, I don't think this dish will ever go out of fashion, it's just too good!
This dish is great for a treat at Christmas if you are looking for new ideas as it is so easy but impressive at the same time. Give it a go and tell me what you think.
How do you cook your leg of lamb?
Roast Leg of Lamb studded with Garlic and Rosemary
Easy and delicious way of cooking a leg of lamb by studding it with garlic and rosemary.
- 1 leg of lamb
- I sprig of fresh rosemary
- 3 garlic cloves, sliced
- sea salt and cracked black pepper
- vegetable oil
- Remove the sprigs of rosemary from the stalk and thickly slice the garlic.
- Make slits in the lamb and poke a piece of garlic and rosemary into each slit.
- Rub oil into the lamb and season with the salt and pepper.
- Cover the lamb with foil and roast at Gas 5, 180 c for about an hour.
- Remove the foil and roast for another 15 minutes for medium .
- Serve with onion sauce and redcurrant gravy.
Chez Le Rêve Français http://chezlerevefrancais.com/