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Slow roast lamb


Serves 6 as a main course, with sides


2kg piece of lamb, leg or shoulder

a bunch of rosemary

a bulb of garlic

salt and pepper

olive oil

a splash of red wine


Pre-heat the oven to 220°C. Peel the garlic cloves and pound them with 1 tbsp salt in a pestle and mortar. Chop the rosemary leaves and add them too, along with enough olive oil to make a paste.


Score several times through any fat on the surface of the lamb and rub it all over with the herb and garlic mixture. Place inside an ovenproof dish and cover with a tight fitting lid or foil.


Put the whole dish in the oven and immediately turn the heat down to 160°C. Leave to roast, covered, for at least three hours, probably more like four. It won't do any harm if you check on it once or twice during cooking, but there's really no need. Don't worry if the lamb seems to be swimming in liquid: a lot of fat and juices will come out during the cooking process. Just leave it.


When the lamb is meltingly tender and falling off the bone, it is done. Remove from the roasting tin, cover loosely with foil and leave to rest for fifteen minutes.


Meanwhile, skim off as much fat as possible from the juices left in the tin, and add the red wine. Bring to the boil gently, over a medium heat and reduce slightly, to yield a thin, but flavourful sauce.


Carve the lamb into chunks and serve with a green salad, roasted vegetables and the sauce.



Photo by Kristi Korotash


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