Roast leg of lamb with rosemary and garlic pesto

Roast leg of lamb with rosemary and garlic pesto
  • Serves icon Serves 6
  • Time icon Hands-on 30 min, oven 65-70 min, plus marinating and resting

Try something new for your Sunday lunch – Debbie Major’s recipe combines succulent roast lamb with a herby pesto marinade, it’s homely enough for weekends but will impress dinner part guests too.

Nutrition: per serving

Calories
462kcals
Fat
25.9g (9.6g saturated)
Protein
51.2g
Carbohydrates
4.8g (3.4g sugars)
Fibre
2.3g
Salt
0.5g
Calories
462kcals
Fat
25.9g (9.6g saturated)
Protein
51.2g
Carbohydrates
4.8g (3.4g sugars)
Fibre
2.3g
Salt
0.5g

Ingredients

  • 1.8-2kg leg of lamb, boned and rolled (about 1.5kg boned weight), bones reserved
  • 1 large onion, halved and thickly sliced
  • 1 large carrot, thickly sliced
  • 4 large fresh rosemary sprigs

For the pesto

  • 2 large fresh rosemary sprigs, leaves picked and chopped
  • 15g fresh flatleaf parsley
  • 3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • Finely grated zest 1 lemon
  • 3-4 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ tsp salt

You’ll also need…

  • Digital probe thermometer

Method

  1. Using a sharp knife, make small 2.5cm deep slits all over the lamb, about 2.5cm apart.
  2. For the pesto, whizz all the ingredients – using 3 tbsp oil – with some black pepper in a mini food processor (or whizz in a jug using a stick blender) to form a paste. Add more oil if it’s a bit thick.
  3. Rub the pesto all over the lamb, pushing it into each slit as you go. Season, then put on a plate, cover loosely with cling film and set aside somewhere cool or in the fridge for at least 2 hours.
  4. Take the meat out of the fridge 2 hours before you want to cook it. Heat the oven to 230°C/fan 210°C/gas 8. Scatter the lamb bones, onion, carrot and rosemary in a roasting tin. Rest the lamb on top, then roast for 15 minutes in the middle of the oven. Lower the heat to 180°C/160°C fan/gas 4 and roast for 50 minutes (for rare) or 55 minutes (for medium). A digital thermometer pushed into the thickest part of the meat should read between 50°C and 60°C.
  5. Remove the lamb from the oven, lift the joint onto a carving board and cover loosely with foil (discard the bones but reserve the veg in the tin). Rest for 45 minutes or until the gravy and side dishes are ready.

delicious. tips

  1. The lamb bones act as a trivet for the meat and help to flavour the gravy, but don’t worry if you can’t get them.

  2. Make the pesto and marinate the lamb, covered, overnight in the fridge.

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