icon caret-left icon caret-right instagram pinterest linkedin facebook twitter goodreads question-circle facebook circle twitter circle linkedin circle instagram circle goodreads circle pinterest circle

Recipes and Stories

26 March 2016: Mastering the Make-Ahead Easter Dinner IV—Butterflied Leg of Lamb

Roast Butterflied Leg of Lamb with Herbs, Garlic, and White Wine

If you’re doing a ham for Easter, you’re pretty much home free from here, but if you like to have lamb for the feast, as I do, you can’t cook it ahead unless you just want to have it cold on purpose.

Fortunately, a boned and butterflied leg cooks quickly with a minimum of last minute fuss. You can buy an already boned leg and butterfly it yourself or you can buy the whole leg, bone and butterfly it (it'll take about 20 minutes) and save the bones for stock.

Serve it with the reduced pan juices, or a prepared aioli, horseradish sauce, mint sauce, or, if you’re so inclined, mint jelly.

Roast Butterflied Leg of Lamb
Serves 8-10

1 whole leg of lamb, about 6-7 pounds or 1 boned leg of lamb
2-3 whole cloves garlic cut into slivers
Salt and whole black pepper in a mill
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
About 2-3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup dry white wine or dry white vermouth

1. If using a whole leg, remove the fell (tough outer layer of fat and membrane if necessary Find bones and make a slit between leg muscled on inside of leg along line of bone. Cut away meat, scraping at joints, and keeping each lobe muscle intact. I take off the whole shank along with the rest of the leg. Lay the muscles flat, trimming any connective tissue as needed so that it lies flat. If using leg already boned by butcher, remove netting and open meat out flat. Trim away the excess fat. Lightly pound thicker parts with mallet to even thickness. Wrap the meat, cover, and refrigerate until 1 hour before cooking.

2. When you’re ready to roast the lamb, preheat the oven to 450° F. Make a few slits in the lamb and insert slivers of garlic into them. Rub the surface with salt and pepper and cover with the herbs. Drizzle with olive oil. Rub bottom of roasting pan with olive oil and put in lamb, fat side up. Roast 20 minutes, or until well-seared, pour the wine over it, and reduce temperature to 375 degrees. Roast to the desired level of doneness, basting occasionally (an internal temperature of 125 degrees for rare, 145 degrees for medium).

3. Remove the meat to platter, loosely cover with foil, and let rest 15 minutes. Meanwhile, you may deglaze the roasting pan with wine or stock and make pan gravy. Thinly slice across grain of meat, arrange on platter, and garnish with sprigs of herbs, if desired.

Be the first to comment