Roast Lebanese leg of lamb recipe

John Gregory-Smith
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Roast Lebanese leg of lamb recipe

A mouth watering lamb dish bursting with flavours thanks to the spices in the marinade. Goes really well with a tangy salad of watercress, pomegranate, fennel and orange.

At a glance
  • Cuisine Lebanese
  • Recipe Type Main
  • Difficulty Easy
  • Preparation time 120 mins
  • Cooking time 45 mins
  • Serves 4 people
Ingredients
  • 1 tbsp Ground cumin
  • 1 tsp Ground coriander
  • 0.5 tsp Ground cinnamon
  • 1 pinch Grated nutmeg
  • 4 tbsp Olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
  • 1 Lamb leg, about 1.6kg/3lb 8oz, butterflied
  • 0.5 Lemon juiced
  • 1 pinch Sea salt
For the lentil purée
  • 200 g (7.1oz) Green lentils, washed and drained
  • 2 tbsp Olive oil
  • 1 Onion, finely chopped
  • 2 Garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp Ground cumin
  • 1 tsp Ground coriander
  • 1 Lemon juiced
  • 1 handful Parsley leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 pinch Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Step-by-step

  1. Put the cumin, coriander, cinnamon, nutmeg and oil in a large mixing bowl, then add a good pinch of salt and mix well. Add the lamb to the bowl and rub in the paste until the lamb is well coated. Cover with cling film and set aside for at least 2 hours, or overnight in the refrigerator if time allows.
  2. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas 6, leaving a roasting rack over a tray in the oven to heat up. Carefully place the seasoned lamb onto the roasting rack, skin side up, and roast for 30-35 minutes, or until the lamb is beautifully browned and crispy on the outside and juicy and pink in the middle. Remove from the oven, squeeze over the lemon juice and season with a good pinch of salt. Cover with foil and leave to rest for 10 minutes so the meat will be even more tender and delicious.
  3. Meanwhile, cook the lentils in a large pan of boiling water for 12-15 minutes, or until they are cooked through and soft. Drain and set aside.
  4. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat, then add the onion and garlic and gently fry, stirring occasionally, for 6-8 minutes, or until golden. Throw in the cumin and coriander, and cook for 30 seconds, stirring frequently, until fragrant. Add the cooked lentils, lemon juice and 240ml/8fl oz/scant 1 cup freshly boiled water and season with a really good pinch of salt and pepper. Use a hand blender to purée the lentils until they are lovely and smooth, adding a little more water if the mixture gets too thick. Scatter in the parsley and gently mix to combine.
  5. Finely slice the lamb and divide between the serving plates. Spoon over any juices from the grilling tray, add a good dollop of the lentil purée to the top of the lamb and a drizzle of oil, then serve immediately.

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