Prep time: 25 mins | Cook: 1 hour 15 mins | Serves 8-10
This is a very festive looking dish. With premium New Zealand lamb you will impress your guests. You could also use a butterflied leg of lamb which is already cut and just needs to be rolled and tied once you have stuffed it.
1 x 2.5kg boneless leg of lamb
For the stuffing
- 1 cup white breadcrumbs (about 3 slices of bread made into crumbs)
- 2 tbsp chopped rosemary
- zest and juice of an orange
- ¼ cup dried cranberries
- 1 tbsp cranberry sauce
- 1 tbsp parsley, chopped
- 1 tbsp each oil and butter
- bunch of rosemary sprigs
- 10 pieces of jute twine or kitchen string
Remove the meat from the fridge an hour or more before cooking so it comes up to room temperature. To prepare the leg of lamb to the stage as shown in the lead picture: Place the lamb skin-side down. Look for the plumpest parts, and partially slice horizontally into them to create a flap. Lift the flap and flip it towards a gap you wish to fill, to create a more even rectangular shape. Cover the meat with plastic wrap and pound it with a rolling pin to flatten and firm into place. Trim off any hard or fat grisly bits. Or, if using a carvery or full leg, ask your butcher to remove the bone for you.
Combine the stuffing ingredients. Place the stuffing in a strip down the middle of one side of the meat then lift the edge and roll the meat tightly as though rolling a swiss roll, tucking in any stray pieces. Tie with kitchen string as shown in the picture here.
Preheat the oven to 200°C or 180°C fan bake. Heat the oil and butter in a roasting pan and brown the lamb leg well on all sides. Remove from the heat, place remaining rosemary sprigs into the pan and place the leg of lamb on top. Roast for 45 minutes.
Poke a metal skewer or thin knife into the centre, count to three and then test it on the inside of your wrist. It should feel warm – if it doesn’t, cook for another 15 minutes and try again.
Place the roast leg of lamb on a warm plate and cover with foil to rest for 15 minutes before removing the string and carving.
Serve your mouth-watering roast leg of lamb warm in thick slices with gravy, or cold in thin slices with cranberry jelly.
Source: Beef + Lamb New Zealand, reproduced with permission.