Sunday, April 20, 2014

Roasted Boneless Leg of Lamb

Just when I think it is impossible to shock me with anything I have hoarded stored, I move something in the freezer that has yet to be moved and find another surprise.  About a week before Easter I was rearranging the freezer shelves and found a boneless leg of lamb.  I had completely forgotten I had it. It was stuffed under the very neat packs of ground beef so I didn't even count it in my previous inventories. I guess I had just counted it as a large package of hamburger meat.  I remembered buying it.  Well, when I realized I had it I remembered buying it,  After 5 days in the refrigerator it finished thawing just in time for Easter.  So in addition to ham we had lamb!

To be really delicious lamb needs to cook at a high heat and be on the rarer side.  I personally like a bit of savory flavor to lamb so I made a simple gremolata to stuff it. (I don't get the lamb and mint jelly thing when you can do savory.)

Roasted Boneless Leg of Lamb

4 pound boneless leg of lamb
butcher's twine
6 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup  fresh parsley, minced fine
2 sprigs fresh rosemary leaves ( remove from stem and chop finely)
zest of 2 lemons ( be careful to use just the zest and not the pith) either grated or minced fine
2 tablespoons olive oil
freshly cracked black pepper

Remove the netting from the lamb.  I then rinse mine and I have no idea why.  It's just something I do.  Place the lamb on a cutting board and flatten it out as much as possible.  You want the side where the bone used to be facing up. Remove as much fat, gristle and silver skin as you can.

Stir the minced garlic, parsley, lemon zest and rosemary in a small bowl to mix well.  Add the olive oil salt and pepper to taste. ( I tend to under salt because we are not a salt loving family.  I possibly use 1/4 teaspoon of salt in this and just grind in pepper until it looks and smells good)

Cut about 6 15 inch lengths  and 1 2 foot length of twine.  It is so much easier to have it ready than to start tying the roast while trying to cut it.

Spread the herb mix over the lamb, making sure to fill the former bone hollows.  Roll the lamb like a jelly roll.  I start tying it in the middle and work my way out in about 1 1/2 inch intervals to about 2 inches from the end of the roast.  ( You are supposed to use just one very long piece of twin and make it  look like a pretty package but that is way above my skill level)  Tuck the ends into the center of the lamb roll.  Take the long length and tie it lengthwise down the center of the roast.  Rub olive oil over the outside of the entire roast  and lightly salt.  Bake on a roasting rack in a baking pan.  Cook at 400 degrees until a meat thermometer in the center reads 140 degrees ( about an hour)  Let the meat rest for about 10 minutes, remove the twine and slice.

Even though we had 2 meats for only 8 people, there were only 3 small slices of lamb left.  It was a big hit with everyone.  I might start having this as my go to Easter main dish.  Hope you day was splendid and filled with family!

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