Recipe: Spiced slow roasted lamb
We don’t eat enough lamb in our household. Lamb mince, sure – but big joints of meat? No.
That’s why receiving two half legs of Welsh Lamb recently was a bit of a treat – I used one for this recipe, and the other (along with a big pile of lamb bones) is currently in the freezer, awaiting its fate.
The raw joint…
Welsh Lamb grazes on sweet Welsh grass and herbs throughout the spring, and – great for someone like me who’s not a fan of fatty lamb – it’s lovely and lean and tender, meaning that it can cope with a quick pan fry as well as with being slow roasted and cooked in a variety of other ways. You may also not have known that Welsh Lamb has been awarded PGI status – a marque that ensures superior quality – thanks to the dedication employed by Welsh Lamb farmers to ensure that the product reaches consumers at its best.
Why is it so great? Well, the Welsh have a long tradition of livestock farming, thanks to the changing terrain of the country: both lowland pastures and mountainous uplands filled with fragrant heathers, and fed by a wealth of streams and rivers. The expansive, grass-rich environment is the perfect place to raise sheep, and the changing terrain means that the lambing season is long: the warmer lowlands produce their lambs first, while the more hardy uplands produce theirs last, meaning that we have access to this great meat right into the winter.
Despite its leanness and versatility, I opted for a longer cooking time for my first half leg – slow roasting the joint for three and a half hours which ensured that it was well-cooked all the way through but remained lovely and tender throughout.
Ready for the oven…
Spiced slow roasted lamb
– Half a Welsh Lamb leg
– 2 tbsp of rapeseed oil
– 3 cloves of garlic, crushed
– 1 dessert spoon of Devonshire Smoked Sea Salt (you can use regular sea salt if you like)
– 1 tbsp of dried thyme
– 1 tbsp of whole cumin seeds
– 1/2 tsp of paprika
– 40g of butter
– 250ml of boiling water
1. Preheat your oven to 160C.
2. Mix together the rapeseed oil, garlic, salt, thyme, cumin and paprika. Melt the butter separately, and pour into the spices, mixing well.
3. Place the lamb in a casserole dish, and coat well with the spice mix, rubbing in to cover the entire surface. Put the casserole dish in the oven, without a lid, and cook for 35 minutes.
4. After 35 minutes, remove from the oven, and pour in the boiling water – be sure to pour around the lamb, so you don’t end up washing the spices off the top. Gently baste the lamb with this liquid, and return to the oven.
5. Cook for a further three hours, basting the lamb every hour. Add more water if it seems to be getting dry.
6. Serve! You can also make a gravy with the juices, should you wish – be warned, though, that it’ll be pretty rich, and you may want to add more liquid before thickening to dilute the flavour.
Please note that this lamb was received free of charge, but we were not obliged to write a positive review.