Oven-Roasted Leg of Lamb with Rosemary and Garlic

posted: 06/30/10

Episode 83: Alli's Menu


  • 6-pound/2.5-kg whole leg of lamb, large bone removed
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 large garlic cloves, bruised and cut in half
  • 8 small sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 4 carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 4 celery stalks, coarsely chopped
  • 2 leeks, coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup/230 ml dry red wine
  • 1 tablespoon/15 ml extra virgin olive oil


  1. Preheat the oven to 350?F/180?C. Using a small, sharp knife cut 8 little pockets into the lamb in various places. Place the garlic pieces and rosemary sprigs in the small pockets, reserving 1 piece of garlic.
  2. Sprinkle the inside of the lamb with salt and pepper.Tie five strands of kitchen twine as tight as possible around the lamb to help hold its shape and elongate it so that it cooks evenly.
  3. Rub the cut side of the reserved garlic clove over the outside of the lamb, then sprinkle the lamb generously with salt and pepper. Preheat a grill pan over a high heat for about 5 minutes or until it is very hot. If you don't have a grill pan you can use a large saut? pan.
  4. Sear the lamb on the grill pan for 10 minutes, or until brown on all sides. Place the carrots, celery, and leeks in the bottom of a large roasting pan. Place the lamb on top of the carrots, celery, and leeks and roast in the oven for 30 minutes.
  5. Decrease the heat to 325?F/165?C. Continue to roast the lamb for about 1 hour longer or until an instant-read meat thermometer registers 135?F/57?C when inserted into the thickest part of the lamb.
  6. Remove the lamb from the oven and transfer to a carving board and let rest for 30 minutes. Place the roasting pan over a medium to high heat and stir the vegetables with the pan juices for 2 minutes or until almost all of the juices have evaporated.
  7. Deglaze the pan with the red wine, and continue to stir any brown bits from the bottom of the pan and cook for about 3 minutes or until the wine has reduced by almost half. Remove the pan from the heat and strain the jus through a fine strainer and into a small saucepan. Discard the vegetables.
  8. Drizzle the extra virgin olive oil into the jus and keep warm. Remove the twine from the lamb. Carve the lamb into thin slices. Stir any lamb juices that accumulate on the carving board into the jus.
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