Oh what a changeable summer we’re having! And now those lovely people at weatherwatch are saying that we’ve seen the best of it and really we only have winter to look forward to. Well if that’s the case then its fast approaching time to dust off the comfort food recipes while quietly hoping that they are wrong and that late summer revival is on the way.

Just in case here’s one of those recipes that will comfort the whole house as it cooks and get the family eagerly sitting at the table. We all know that garlic and rosemary work so well with Lamb, but anchovies you must be joking. Trust me this really works by adding a maritime saltiness to the lamb, and for those that refuse to try anchovies or have only ever tried those nasty processed ones so beloved by pizzamakers, you won’t taste them as fish, it’s the flavour they impart to the lamb that is important. Also you won’t even be able to see them as they pretty much break down during the cooking process, so for the sneaky cooks amongst you try it and don’t let on, the only thing anyone will notice is just how amazing the lamb tastes.

The recipe is set up for a hooded BBQ, which works really well, however in the oven at 225 º c for the first 5 minutes and then down to 180ºc for the rest is just as good.

Roast Leg of Lamb

Serves 6 – 8

1 Leg of NZ Lamb

4 large cloves garlic, peeled and sliced into 3

75g tinned anchovies

1 bunch rosemary

75g softened butter

Juice of 1 lemon


Stud the surface of the lamb with garlic, rosemary and half the anchovies.  Beat the butter, lemon juice and remaining anchovy and spread over the skin.  Place on a preheated hot barbeque for 5 minutes to sear, then turn down heat and cook with lid down for a further 50 minutes until core temperature reaches 62˚C (for medium rare.)  Rest and serve.


I love a good merlot with lamb and you have to go a long way to beat the Bay’s own Mills Reef, try the Elsbeth Merlot 2009.

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