Marinated Roast Leg of Lamb with Red Wine Gravy

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Ingredients

  • 1 Leg of Lamb (trimmed, thigh bone removed, and trussed)
  • 1000ml Red Wine
  • 500ml Brown Chicken Stock
  • 3 Onions (washed, trimmed, peeled, and quartered)
  • 2 Carrots (washed, trimmed, peeled, and sliced)
  • 2 Celery Sticks (washed, trimmed, and sliced)
  • 1 Leek (washed, trimmed, sliced)
  • 2 Tomatoes (washed, trimmed, diced)
  • 1 Whole Head of Garlic (split in half horizontally)
  • 3 Bay Leaves
  • 6 Whole Peppercorns
  • 1 Star Anise
  • 5 Juniper Berries
  • 4 Allspice Berries
  • Large Bunch of Thyme
  • Large Bunch of Parsley
  • 2 Sprigs Rosemary
  • 25g Cornstarch

Instructions:

  1. Place the lamb, red wine, onions, carrots, celery, leek, garlic, herbs and spices all in a bowl.  Cover with cling film, and refrigerate for 12-24hrs.
  2. Remove your marinated lamb from the fridge 2hrs before cooking and let it stand to come to room temperature before cooking.
  3. Preheat your oven by setting it to broil on high.
  4. Strain your lamb and other ingredients through a colander.  Remove your lamb from your other ingredients, and pat it dry with kitchen towel.  Season with salt and pepper and a light coating of olive oil.
  5. Place your lamb on a roasting pan, and into your oven.  Colour your lamb by placing it under the broiler for 10-15mins, turning occasionally to evenly distribute the heat and colour your lamb all over.
  6. When your lamb is golden brown, turn your oven temperature down to 300ºF, and roast your lamb for approximately 1-1.5hrs until your desired doneness.  Remove your lamb from the oven, and allow it to rest for 30mins before carving.
  7. In a wide surface saute pan, heat under medium high heat and add a little olive oil along with all your strained vegetables, herbs and spices into the pan.  Cook for approximately 15mins until all your ingredients are sweated down and lightly caramelized.
  8. When your vegetables and other ingredients are sweated down, add your red wine that you used to marinate your lamb and turn the heat up to high.  Bring your red wine up to a boil and reduce it down to a syrup.  Add your chicken stock and bring it up to a boil.  Turn down the heat to low and allow your sauce to simmer for 20mins.
  9. Check the consistency of your sauce.  If it’s thick enough, omit the cornstarch.  Otherwise add a splash of water to your cornstarch and pour your slurry mix into your sauce.  Bring your sauce up to a boil.  Pass your sauce through a fine mesh strainer and into a clean pan or jug.
  10. Pour a generous amount of sauce onto a large serving dish or tray, followed by your carved leg of lamb on top.

Notes

  • This is a great way to prepare and serve lamb.  Removing the thigh bone helps to ensure the red wine marinade really penetrates deep inside the lamb, leading to a more succulent and flavourful end product.  It also makes carving/slicing the lamb really simple and straightforward, providing maximum portion control.
  • The red wine marinade will help to remove some of the gaminess from the lamb as well as tenderize the meat, thus improving the overall eating quality.
  • Unlike Beef, Lamb shouldn’t be cooked rare or medium rare but more towards medium (around 130-135ºF).  While perfectly safe to eat lamb rare, it’s better served medium as lamb fat has a higher melting point than beef.  So it has to be cooked to medium for the fat to melt/render properly.  
  • Depending upon how thick you like your sauce and whether or not you use homemade or store bought chicken stock, you may or may not need any cornstarch for thickening your sauce.  Homemade chicken stock tends to have a lot of viscosity to it due to all the natural gelatin in it, whereas most commercial store bought stock has very little body or viscosity to it. 
  • Not gonna lie this sauce is quite rich, heavy and flavourful so I like to mop my plate up with some bread after I’ve finished my lamb in order to fully enjoy the sauce.  I figure I kill two birds with one stone this way, I get to really taste and enjoy the sauce and leave less of a mess on my plate to wash afterwards, lol.

 

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