Back to the freezer. Wondering around the supermarket one day, who knows when, I saw a fantastic sale on New Zealand lamb, grabbed a leg and wedged it into the freezer. In keeping with “vide congelateur”, I un-wedged it on Friday to thaw and invited 5 friends to lunch on Saturday. Mah-ve-lous! We began with smoked salmon from my fishmonger, L’Ambiance des Halles, on a bed of mixed salad with capers, creme fraiche and chives.
I decided to go with herbs and olive oil for the leg and, a la Jamie, jam large pieces of fresh bay leaf from M. Parret’s garden into the assertive stabs I made with the knife. I then wrapped it in plastic wrap and put it into the refrigerator overnight to mature.
Making the vegetables, I ignored one of my, my mother’s, my grandmother’s and probably her mother’s life long maxims; you can never make too much, but you can, to your everlasting discomfort, make too little.
Of course no one said so, but they wanted MORE! Herb roasted vegetables are so simple to make, yet so delicious!
I did make a big old bowl of tzatziki for the lamb.
Like Goldilock’s porridge, it was just right!
Big thanks to Thierry for his masterful carving of the lamb and to Arielle in her role as conseiller technique.
Thanks to Tonio for his ability to sit still when his picture is being taken But most of all for his sang-froid when after my camera fell, stopped functioning and I was ready to go to bed or worse, in pointing out that the hood was blocking the lens.
Thank you always to Chantal who hates to see a dish unwashed or a surface left unwiped And sincere appreciation for her constant support and understanding.
And of course all my love to Le Parret who, with his meal long running commentary, never let me forget that he was French and that I was not Thank you, Cherie.
It was good and I had a good time making and sharing it with friends.
Herb Roasted Leg of Lamb
1 leg of lamb, violently stabbed all over with a knife
3 large garlic cloves, chopped
1 tbsp fresh thyme, chopped
1 tbsp rosemary, chopped
1 tbsp black pepper
1 tbsp cumin seeds
1/4 cup olive oil
2 fresh bay leaves, broken into pieces
Mix together the garlic, thyme, rosemary, pepper, cumin and olive oil. Rub this mixture into the lamb leg. Insert pieces of bay leaves into the the knife slits, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
Heat the oven to 425 F and roast the lamb for 30 minutes, then lower the temperature to 350 F and continue to cook for 1 hour.
Wine suggestion: Cremant de Bailly Chardonnay, Pouilly Fusee, Morgon