Slow Cooked Leg of Lamb with Anchovies
Yesterday I went out into the Saturday market and bought a large leg of lamb. I had no idea what to do with it, but after searching through several recipes, I did a combination of three recipes to create tonight’s dinner-Slow Cooked Leg of Lamb with Anchovies. As strange as it may seem, I love anchovy, and with lamb, it is a wonderful combination. The salty intense flavour of anchovies is LOVELY with the hearty flavour of the lamb.
2kg/4lb leg of lamb, trimmed of most of its outer layer of fat
6 anchovy fillets
6 cloves of garlic, peeled and cut in half lengthwise
1 head of garlic, cloves broken apart, but not peeled
1 bunch of rosemary, torn into sprigs
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper (I forgot to use this! – oops! – didn’t matter!)
300ml red wine (or you could use double the quantity of stock, below)
300ml stock (I just used a beef oxo cube with boiling water)
One bag of Organic Onions, peeled and quartered
Place the lamb on a cutting board and, using a sharp knife, pierce half-inch pockets on its surface. Tear the anchovies in half. In each pocket, place a sliver of garlic, an anchovy and a sprig of rosemary. Spray with olive oil, (like I did), or you can rub all over with butter and season with salt and pepper.
Bring wine and stock to a boil in a pan, then pour over the lamb leg. Cover with foil tightly and place on the middle shelf of the oven and cook for 7 hours. (Yes, 5 hours is what I said!!!!).
Go and have fun – do some gardening (like I did), just FORGET about that leg!!!! (you don’t even need to baste it or check up on it – just come inside every now and then, and inhale all those lovely aromas!)
After 5 hours, remove the leg to another tin/dish, turn the oven up to 200C/fan180C/gas 6 and put the leg in to crisp the skin for about 15 to 20 minutes. Take out of the oven and leave to rest for approx 15 minutes.
You are now good to go!!! The onions and garlic can be strained and served as a side dish with whatever else you are serving it with.
I just made some steamed broccoli to go with it, which was just perfect with all the richness of the lamb and onions, however, roasted sweet potatoes, or mashed, would be lovely as well as some slow cooked courgettes that have been laced with olive oil and garlic. You can also reduce the cooking juices to make a lovely, rich gravy!
Open a bottle of Barolo and enjoy.