Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Per Se Leg of Lamb

1 cup whole plain yogurt
1 tablespoon smoked sweet Spanish paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 head garlic, peeled
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
1/3 cup packed mint leaves
1/4 cup kosher salt, plus more as needed
Freshly ground black pepper
1 8-to-10 pound leg of American lamb, boned and butterflied
1/2 loaf French bread, cut into 1/2 -inch thick slices.

1. In a food processor, combine the yogurt, paprika, cumin, coriander, garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, mint and 1/4 cup kosher salt. Pulse until the mint and garlic are finely chopped.

2. Season the lamb on all sides with salt and black pepper. Lay the lamb fat-side down, roll into a tight cylinder and tie with cooking twine. Place in a container just large enough to hold it. Pour the marinade over the lamb and massage it into the meat. Dip both sides of the bread pieces into the marinade and place evenly over the meat. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

3. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Transfer the lamb to a large roasting pan, discard the bread and reserve the excess marinade. Baste the lamb with the marinade. Cook in the oven until a meat thermometer reads 130 degrees, for medium rare, about 2 to 2 1/2 hours depending on the thickness of the lamb. Baste with the marinade from time to time during the first hour of cooking. Remove from oven, tent with foil and let rest for 20 minutes before slicing. Serves 10 to 12.

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