Slashed roast leg of lamb with harrisa stuffing (a Maroque recipe)
I came across this unusual way of dealing with a leg of lamb from a recipe by Jill Dupleix, and it really works. It cooks quickly and evenly and carving is a doddle
Leg of lamb, about 2kg
1 onion, one half slices, the other for blending to make the stuffing
4 garlic cloves peeled
2 tsp harrisa, either from a jar or paste made up fresh
1 tbs parsley
3 tbs olive oil
30g bread crumbs (a small roll whizzed up)
15g pine nuts
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Pre heat the oven to 220C gas mark 7. Lay the leg of lamb meaty side uppermost on a chopping board and using a large sharp knife, cut deep slashes to the bone widthways all along its length, spacing the cuts about 1cm 1/2” apart (these will form your slices when you carve it). The slices should fan out a little like a book.
2. Toast the pine nuts in a small pan until golden and leave to cool in a glass bowl, big enough to take the stuffing. To make the stuffing put one half of onion, the garlic, parsley, harrisa and olive oil into a little blender and whizz until fairly smooth. Add the breadcrumbs to the mixture and give another little whizz. Add this to the bowl with the toasted pine nuts and mix well adding some salt and pepper to taste.
3. Spread a thin layer of the stuffing into all the cuts you have made in the lamb. Using fine string, tie the lamb to keep the slashes from fanning out while cooking.
4. Make a bed of the sliced onions for the lamb in the roasting tin and lay the tied up lamb on top. Season with salt and pepper and drizzle with a little olive oil. Put uncovered in the high oven for 20 minutes.
5. Turn the oven down to 190C and cover the lamb with foil, cook for 15 minutes per lb (this will produce pink lamb).
6. When cooked transfer the lamb to a carving board and cover with foil to keep warm.
7. Remove the excess fat from the roasting tin and put on a low gas ring, add about 1/2 pint of vegetable stock and stir, getting all the nice gooey bits from the bottom of the tin. Bring to the boil and strain into a clean saucepan.
8. Simmer until reduced to the thin gravy, check seasoning and adjust as needed, adding any juices from the meat as it rests, and pour into a serving jug.
9. Carve the meat across the slashes into slices and serve.
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