One of my favourite Spring weekend recipes is a roast leg of lamb. The reason for this is, aside from it being delicious it's also super simple (shhh, don't tell my hubby, I like earning wife points with this recipe), it only takes about an hour. This recipe is the result of improvisation. I'm renting and don't want to place my lamb directly on the "hot bars of the oven", nor do I want the lamb any where near my roast potatoes, because I want them super crispy and the meat juices will make them soggy. By the way, the secret to super crispy roast potatoes is in the technique below. I also love the combination of asparagus and prosciutto as a side dish.
So next sunday, when you want to earn wife/husband points make this roast!
For the lamb
1 bulb garlic, 3 cloves peeled and crushed, the others left whole
1 small bunch fresh rosemary, most leaves removed and coarsely chopped, some sprigs
zest of 1 lemon
1.5 kg quality, deboned leg of lamb
0.5 cup balsamic vinegar
1 cube beef stock, dissolved in 250ml water
1 red onion, quartered
For the veg
1.5 kg potatoes, peeled and quartered
4 baby carrots, peeled and cut in half
1 bunch asparagus
3 slices prosciutto, sliced into strips
Preheat the oven to 200ºC/400ºC/gas 6.
Mix the crushed garlic, chopped rosemary, lemon zest, sea salt and olive oil together on your chopping board. Rub the lamb with the marinade. On the stove, heat a little bit of oil in a cast iron pot with a lid. Add your leg of lamb to the pot and sear on all sides.
Remove the pot from the heat. Add the balsamic, stock, and onion. Place in the oven for 1 hour if you want pink, and an hour and 15 minutes if you would like it more well done.
After your lamb has been roasting for 30 minutes, boil your potatoes, simmer for 10 minutes. Add olive oil and scuff the edges by placing a lid on your pot and shaking. Add the rosemary sprigs, carrots and whole garlic cloves, season with salt and pepper. Tip the potatoes into a baking tray lined with baking paper and spread them out so that none of the potatoes are touching. Place the tray on the top shelf of the oven. Roast for 25 - 30 minutes.
Five minutes before the roast is done, add the prosciutto, asparagus and butter to a pan. Fry until the prosciutto is crispy and the asparagus are bright green and still crisp.
Remove your lamb from the oven and allow to rest on a chopping board. Force the gravy from the pot through a sieve and reduce on the stove.
Dish up and enjoy!