Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Herb and Garlic Roasted Leg of Lamb

A plump 3-pound leg of lamb, boned and tied — infused with herbs and garlic

Sometimes I feel that I could become a Pescatarian, but I don't know if I could give up lamb, given that some of my favourite recipes feature my fluffy friend — Rack of Lamb Chermoula, Lamb Vindaloo, Braised Lamb Shanks and of course, my Herb and Garlic Roasted Leg of Lamb. This recipe is easy to prepare and is absolutely delicious. An aromatic mixture of chopped rosemary, thyme, parsley and garlic is stuffed into small pockets around the lamb, which is then pan seared to lock in all it's succulent flavour, and then topped with a savoury Dijon mustard coating. As the lamb roasts in the oven for about an hour, the herbs and mustard baste the leg creating a wonderfully flavoured crust, and infusing the kitchen with an intoxicating and unmistakable aroma of roast lamb.

Lovely fresh sugar snap peas

A quintessentially Tuscan meal, roast lamb served with sautéed white Cannellini Beans and rosemary is a classic and delicious combination. Accompanied with a lovely big bowl of Sugar Snap Peas sautéed in a little red onion and fresh mint, also makes this a perfect Easter dinner menu.

Rosemary, thyme, Italian parsley and garlic

Herb and Garlic Roasted Leg of Lamb
Serves 6-8

1 (3-pound) boneless leg of lamb, tied
1 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary
1 tbsp chopped fresh thyme
1 tbsp chopped fresh Italian parsley
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup Dijon mustard
2 tbsp olive oil

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Sprinkle lamb lightly on all sides with salt and pepper. Combine rosemary, thyme, parsley and garlic in a small bowl and mix to combine. Cut 1/2" deep slits in the thickest parts of the lamb and fill the cuts with the herb mixture, pressing the mixture in deep with your fingers.

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Brown the lamb on all sides, about 3-5 minutes per side. Remove the lamb from the skillet and transfer to a roasting pan. Coat the lamb with mustard on all sides, then roast for about an hour, until the lamb reaches 135°F on a meat thermometer, for medium rare.

Remove from the oven and allow to rest 10-15 minutes before carving. Serve warm with Tuscan White Beans with Rosemary and Sugar Snap Peas with Mint. 

Gorgeous, fragrant and creamy Cannellini beans

Tuscan White Beans with Rosemary
Serves 4-6

3 tbsp olive oil
3 bay leaves
2 tsp dried rosemary, crushed
2 tsp fresh rosemary, whole leaves
2 15-ounce cans Cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
Fresh ground black pepper and Maldon salt

Heat oil, bay leaves and dried rosemary in a saucepan over medium heat, until the oil begins to bubble, about 1-2 minutes. Reduce the heat to low and cook 2 more minutes. Add the means and season with salt and pepper to taste. Cover and cook the beans through, about 5 minutes. Discard bay leaves. Sprinkle with fresh rosemary and a grinding of black pepper. Serve warm.

Trim the tops and bottoms off the sugar snap peas

Sugar Snap Peas with Mint
Serves 4-6

1 1/2 lb sugar snap peas, trimmed top and bottom
2 tbsp olive oil
3 tbsp red onion
1/2 cup fresh mint leaves, thinly sliced
1/2 tsp lemon zest
Fresh ground black pepper

Heat oil in a non stick skillet over medium. Add the red onion, reduce heat to medium-low and cook until softened, about 3 minutes. Stir in sugar snap peas. Increase heat to medium-high and stir-fry about 3 minutes. Stir in the mint and season with pepper. Remove from the heat, garnish with some lemon zest and serve immediately.

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