Contributed by The Vermont Farm Table Cookbook by Tracey Medeiros
This is one of Chris and Shannon's (Longview Farm, Chris and Shannon Barsotti) favorite recipes, a perfect dish for a large gathering of family and friends. A leg of lamb will yield more than enough meat for eight servings, but leftovers can be used to make Curried Lamb Tacos. Fresh Turkish bay leaves have a mild and complex flavor and are subtly sweet; they enhance the flavor of the roast and add a wonderful depth of flavor. If you can't find fresh bay leaves, you can substitute 20 to 24 dried bay leaves.
Serves 8, with leftovers
1 (9- to 10-pound) bone-in leg of lamb, perferably grass-fed, trimmed
5-6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1⁄4cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1⁄4 cup chopped fresh rosemary, plus sprigs for garnish
2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
5 baking potatoes, peeled and quartered
10-12 fresh Turkish bay leaves
1 large sweet onion, cut into 8 wedges
1 cup beef stock
1⁄4 cup red wine
Preheat the overn to 500 degrees.
Using a sharp knife, make 1-inch slits all over the meat and insert garlic slices into the slits. In a small bowl, combine the oil, lemon juice, rosemary, and thyme. Rub the mixture evenly over the surface of the lamb and season with salt and pepper to taste. Place the lamb in a roasting pan and roast for 1 hour.
Meanwhile, place the potatoes in a large saucepan, cover with salted water by 1 inch, and bring to a boil. Cook the potatoes for 5 to 6 minutes, then drain and set aside.
Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees. Place the bay leaves on top of the roast, arrange the potatoes and onion wedges around it, and add the stock and wine to the pan. Roast until the internal temperature of the meat reaches 140 degrees (for medium-rare) and the potatoes are browned, crisp and fork-tender, 1 1⁄2 to 2 hours. Baste the lamb and potatoes occasionally with pan juices and turn the potatoes once while roasting.
Transfer the lamb to a carving board and let rest for 15 mintures. Transfer the potatoes and onions to a platter and season with salt and pepper to taste. Pour the pan juices into a small saucepan, scraping the bits from the bottom of the roasting pan, and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Carve the lamb into thin slices and arrange on a platter with the potatoes and onion wedges. Drizzle with some of the pan juices and garnish with rosemary sprigs. Serve along with the remaining pan juices.