Magazine article Sunset

Together for Easter, Lamb with Vegetables

Magazine article Sunset

Together for Easter, Lamb with Vegetables

Article excerpt

A perennial favorite for Easter or other special spring dinners, leg of lamb scores high with its ease in preparation.

We have embellished the basic roast with vegetables that cook alongside and seasonings that flavor both. Two of the recipes use the leg bone-in; the third calls for a boned and butterflied leg (it cooks more quickly). All three presentations are almost complete meals in themselves, but you might want to add asparagus, artichokes, or salad to the menu. Lemon-glazed Lamb with Carrots and Shallots 1 leg of lamb (about 5 lb.) Salt and pepper 3 tablespoons melted butter or margarine 3 pounds baby carrots or small regular carrots, peeled 1/3 cup lemon juice 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1/2 teaspoon grated lemon peel 2 tablespoons honey 2 pounds shallots, peeled 1 cup regular-strength chicken broth

Sprinkle lamb lightly with salt and pepper. Set lamb, fat side up, directly in a roasting pan (at least 12 by 15 in.). Pour melted butter into a 10- by 15-inch pan; add carrots and turn in butter until coated. Put both pans, uncovered, in a 325[deg.] oven, with the lamb in the center of the oven and the carrots on lowest rack.

Meanwhile, stir together lemon juice, mustard, cinnamon, lemon peel, and honey. After 30 minutes of cooking, stir shallots into lamb pan drippings. Roast 30 minutes longer. Baste meat and vegetables with lemon mixture 2 or 3 times as they cook, until thermometer inserted in thickest part of lamb reads 140[deg.] to 145[deg.] for medium-rare, about 40 minutes longer (about 1 hr. 40 min. total). If meat is done first, remove meat from oven and continue cooking vegetables. Set meat and vegetables on platter; keep warm.

Skim off and discard fat from pan drippings. Add remaining lemon baste and broth to lamb pan. Stir over medium heat, scraping pan to free browned particles, and bring to boiling. Pour into a bowl and offer to spoon over individual portions. Makes 6 to 8 servings. Mediterranean Lamb with Vegetables 1 leg of lamb (about 5 lb.) 2 tablespoons lemon juice 1/2 cup olive oil 3 springs fresh rosemary (each 6 to 8 in. long) of 1 teaspoon dry rosemary 2 teaspoons dry oregano leaves Salt and pepper 12 to 16 small thin-skinned potatoes (1-1/2-in. diameter), scrubbed, or larger potatoes cut into 1-1/2-inch chunks 6 to 8 small (1-1/2 to 2 lb. total) Japanese eggplant or 2 small (3/4 to 1 lb. each) regular eggplant 2 small onions, cut into 1-inch wedges 1 bay leaf 3 cloves garlic, minced or mashed 8 firm-ripe pear-shaped tomatoes, cut in half 1/2 cup calamata or Greek (salty black) olives 1 cup regular-strength beef broth

Rub lmab with lemon juice and about 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. With a long-bladed knife, pierce all the way through the thickest part of the leg in 3 places. Pull rosemary springs through lamb. (Or rub leg with dry rosemary.) Sprinkle lamb with 1 teaspoon of the oregano and lightly with salt and pepper. Place lamb, fat side up, in a 12- by 17-inch roasting pan. Place potatoes around lamb. Bake, uncovered, on center rack of a 400[deg.] oven for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, cut Japanese eggplant: starting at the blossom end, make several lengthwise parallel cuts 1/4 inch apart to within 1 inch of stem end. Or slice regular eggplant lengthwise through stem into quarters, then into 1/4-inch-thick lengthwise slices to within 1 inch of stem. …

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