Monday, 15 April 2013

Roast Lamb for Easter Dinner

Sometimes I am shocked by what I read on the internet - for instance a recent survey that found that 40% of Americans have never tasted lamb.  There are over 30 million sheep in this country, whereas in the USA there are a mere 6 or 7 million.  All I can say is that all those poor Americans are deprived of the most delicious meat of them all.

The French have cuisine.  The English have cooking.  So here goes...

Here is my foolproof method for keeping a joint moist when roasting it.  This way you get the best of both worlds - a nice tasty crunchy top, and soft moist meat underneath swimming in its own juices. You can thicken the sauce to make gravy, but I don't bother.

Here are the vegetables that will be underneath the joint in the oven - a sliced onion, celeriac cut into cubes, and two large cloves of garlic.  I like to use onion or leek combined with a root vegetable. Freshly picked from the garden are two or three bay leaves and a couple of sprigs of rosemary.  You will also need vegetable oil, white wine and salt and pepper.  

The garlic is on the right.  I just slice it thinly.  I've never been converted to garlic crushers.

The meat tin has two layers of foil to line it.  The splodge of vegetable oil is to prevent the vegetables from sticking during cooking.

All the chopped vegetables go into the foil, with the bay leaves and plenty of salt and pepper.  I have taken the rosemary off the woody stalks.

The joint of lamb sits on top of the vegetables.  This is a joint of boned leg.  I have sprinkled pepper and salt on top.

Next, scrunch the foil around the sides to cover the meat, but leave the fat on top exposed. 
Be careful not to puncture or split the foil.

Now pour white wine down into the foil.  I never measure it, but about a couple of glasses' worth will do.

This is how the joint will look when cooked, with the roast parts on top looking nice and browned and the underneath totally succulent.

It was served up with roast spuds with chunks of roast swede chucked in.  No, they weren't burnt, just well cooked.  I'm not a food stylist, I just cook and eat the stuff.

And carrots, cauliflower and broccoli.

Finally, the meat is cut into thick slices.

I'm looking forward to next Easter already.


  1. I love lamb, but never buy it here as it is really expensive. Then again, all meat has gotten expensive after last summer's extreme drought in cattle country. A small beef roast was over $25. Who can afford to buy this? A question: what is roast swede? I am wondering if it was we call rutabagas or something else? I agree about using root vegetables, but celeriac is only seen occasionally in our markets. Same with parsnips. I have to think this is because few people buy them when they are available. Sad. The American diet is becoming ever poorer.

    1. Hello Mary Ellen,

      Yes, a swede (originally called a Swedish turnip)is what you call rutabaga.

      Such a shame a good joint of meat is so expensive for you. It's not particularly cheap here, but good meat is easy to buy and worth every penny.


  2. I've never cooked lamb myself, but I love eating it when I get a chance!But I may be a weird American since I grew up in Germany. :)

  3. we've never had lamb before but my hubby has decided he wants to try it. I think I'll try your recipe here when I get the nerve!

    1. Give it a go, Ginger! If you can get a nice piece of lamb, you should love it. You can cook any meat like this. Beef is nice done with red wine.

      The one thing I didn't put was cooking times. It all depends on the size of the joint and the type of oven.




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