Delicious recipe for Roasted Leg of Lamb, just in time for Passover!
Larding is an Old World technique that adds flavor and helps to tenderize meat. Traditionally pieces of animal fat (usually pork) were used as “lardons” and inserted into the meat with a larding needle. Over the years this technique has come to include the insertion of herbs and aromatics as well. An easy way to insert the “lardons” used in this recipe is to cut small slits in the surface of the meat and then stuff the slits with the herbs and aromatics before roasting.
- 1 Leg of Lamb, trimmed of excess fat
- 7-8 Stalks of Fresh Rosemary (about 3-4 inches long)
- 7-8 Sprigs of Fresh Thyme (about 3-4 inches long)
- 1 med Sweet Vidalia Onion, peeled and diced
- 2 med Red Onions, cut into large chunks
- 2 lg Garlic Heads
- 3 Shallots, peeled and sliced
- 1 Cup Beef Stock
- 2 Cups Red Wine
- 3 Tablspoons Raw Honey
- 6 Tablspoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Sea Salt
- Fresh Cracked Peppercorns
- Prepare Rosemary - Pull about 25 or 30 small leaf florets from the stems and set aside. Gather remaining stems and stalks together in a bundle and tie with kitchen twine.
- Prepare Thyme - divide several springs into small 1 inch pieces. Gather the remaining sprigs into a bundle and tie with kitchen twine.
- Prepare Garlic - Separate the individual cloves and peel each one. Slice larger cloves long-wise into 2 or 3 pieces.
- Prepare Lamb Roast for Larding - Using a sharp knife, cut 1 inch long slits that are evenly distributed across the meat. Into each slit, insert a piece of garlic and small florets and sprigs of Rosemary and Thyme. Salt and pepper the surface of the roast. Lightly oil the bottom of a baking dish or roast pan and place the herb bundles, remaining cloves of garlic and red onion pieces in the pan. Place the Lamb Roast on top of the herbs and cover with plastic wrap and allow roast to rest at room temperature for about 2 hours.
- Roast - Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Remove plastic wrap and drizzle roast with a few tablespoons of olive oil then pour 1 cup of wine and ½ cup of the beef stock over it then put it all into the oven for 10 to 15 minutes. Reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F and roast for another 1 to 1½ hours or until the meat is tender. Remove from oven and place roast on platter and cover with foil and allow to rest for 20 minutes before serving.
- While the roast is resting, pour the roasting liquids and garlic into a pan. Remove all but about 2 Tabls of fat from the meat juices. Remove the herb bundles and discard. Pour remaining wine into the roasting dish and scrape the sides and bottom to remove any browned bits and add this to the pan of juices. Add the remaining beef stock to the pan and cook until reduced by half. Heat the oil in a skillet and saute the onion and shallots until they begin to caramelize. Stir in the raw honey and continue until they are all golden in color then add them to the pan of meat juices. Add the onion mixture to the meat juices and stir to combine. Pour this sauce into a gravy boat or small pitcher to drizzle over carved lamb.
- Serve the Lamb Roast with a few stalks of fresh Rosemary and Thyme for garnish and the sauce for drizzling.
Happy Passover and enjoy your roasted leg of lamb!