What to make for Easter? Need some inspiration? This slow-roasted leg of lamb is the most succulent and flavorful option if you want to make your Easter dinner a guaranteed success.
In Denmark roasted leg of lamb is a must during the Easter days. Traditionally it is garnished with rosemary and garlic, and maybe a bit of mint for those who want to be adventurous. In this recipe we’ve turned up the volume on these traditional flavors and added some aromatic herbs and spices that work perfectly with lamb.
Often, the biggest challenge when cooking a whole leg of lamb is that it might go dry. This is because the meat is relatively unevenly distributed around the leg. By slow-cooking it at a very low temperature you avoid this completely, and the result is the most tender and juicy meat. You don’t even need a knife to cut through it, you can simple pull it off the bone. Serve with a nice full-bodied wine. This wonderful slow-roasted leg of lamb deserves nothing less.
3 inch (7 cm) cube fresh ginger
2 tsp fennel seeds
4 tsp coriander seeds
4 cloves garlic
3 sprigs rosemary, needles only, finely chopped
2 tbsp honey
½-1 tsp dried chili flakes
4 tbsp olive oil
Min. 4 lb (2 kg) leg of lamb roast
2 yellow onions
1 large carrot
½ fennel bulb
2 whole sprigs rosemary
1 ½ cup (400 ml) dry white wine
1 ½ cup (400 ml) chicken stock (lamb stock if you can get it)
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Crush and grind up all the ingredients for the marinade using a mortar and pestle. The ginger and garlic can be a little tricky to grind, so if you like, you can shred it first before you add it to the mortar. It should look like a grainy paste once it’s done.
2. Smear the spice paste on all the sides of the scored lamb. Let it rest for at least 20 min. If you have the time, you can easily let it rest for a couple of hours. That only makes it better. Season well with salt and pepper.
3. Cut the onion, carrot and fennel into large chunks and put them in a deep baking tray large enough to hold the lamb roast. Then add the white wine, stock and vinegar and stir a few times to mix it all up. Now place the roast on top in the baking tray. Next, use aluminum foil to make a lid for the tray. It’s very important that the lid is wrapped tightly around the edges of the tray. In this way the juices inside don’t evaporate once it’s in the oven.
4. Set the oven at 225 Fahrenheit (110 Celsius) and bake the lamb for 10-12 hours. Since the cooking time is so long, you don’t need to preheat the oven. Only for the last 5 minutes of the cooking time, turn the oven to 475 Fahrenheit (250 Celsius) and remove the aluminum cover. This is to make the roast crispy and golden on top. Finally, let it rest for 5-10 minutes before serving.
The slow-roasted leg of lamb can be served with a nice salad or you can use the juices in the bottom of the tray for a sauce and serve with potatoes. To do this sift the juice and boil it down to 1/3 and add some heavy cream. You can even add some red wine, or port, to the juices if you like.
Need an idea for a great side dish for this yummy lamb roast? Try these tasty cool carrots:
And if you really like slow cooking, you might want to try this other great recipe for pork cheeks in Marsala wine: