I’m one of those cooks that has a fascination with the seasons, not just for the different foods that become available but also for the different cooking styles that we can use. Imagine the cosy warmth of coming home on a cold winters evening to find this leg of lamb just coming out of the oven, bliss.
And it all just keeps on getting better as for me this seasons lamb is only now starting to show its true flavour, you see the little beasties have had a good six months on the paddock instead of the flavourless early season lamb. The end result is a wonderful full flavoured leg of lamb that quite frankly is so tender you could cut it with a spoon.
Just a final note on the bouquet garni, I know you can buy weird tea bag like things in the supermarket, but I beg you to make your own, especially with this dish. All you need to do is put together the fresh herbs that you want and tie them up with a bit of butchers string, don’t be shy about big sprigs of herbs as this will make it easier to tie up. For this dish I use parsley, thyme, a bit of rosemary and a bay leaf.
Seven Hour Leg of lamb
1 Large leg of Lamb about 3kg
50ml olive oil
8 shallots, thinly sliced (you can use 3 white or red onions instead)
6 medium carrots peeled and chopped to large dice
20 cloves of garlic (2 peeled and sliced, the rest just peeled)
300ml dry white wine
1 bouquet garni
200g plain flour
Preheat the oven to 150°c while you prepare the lamb. Make small incisions in the lamb and push a slice of garlic into each one. Rub all over with the olive oil and then season with salt and pepper. Put the leg of lamb in a dutch oven along with the onions, carrots and the rest of the garlic, finally add the bouquet garni and the wine, and put the lid on.
Next comes the sneaky bit, make a rough bread dough out of the flour and water and use this to seal the lid on, much like grout. You won’t be eating this, it’s job is to create a seal. Place the dutch oven in the preheated oven and go and find something to do for about 7 hours.
Remove from the oven, break the seal and serve.
A good red wine would obviously work with this, but why not be a bit original and try a Viognier, the white wine with body and as luck would have it Mills Reef make an absolute cracker.