Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Herb Crusted Leg of Lamb

Tonight I made a wonderful leg of Lamb. I found the recipe in a cookbook I have that is filled with over 2000 authentic Italian recipes, "The Silver Spoon".

The herbs that were included were Thyme, Oregano, Rosemary and Flat-Leaf Parsley. I then mixed these with bread crumbs and olive oil. I covered the leg of Lamb in the mixture and let it sit in the roasting pan to come more to room temperature.

I had two guys on the team over for dinner and was also making Brussel Sprouts and mashed potatoes. They were in charge of bringing dessert, store bought chocolate cake with ice-cream!

Here's where it got tricky. My leg of Lamb was 4.5 pounds. The recipe said to bake it in the oven at 475 for 15 minutes. Pour 2/3 cup of water in the pan and reduce the heat to 350 and bake for another 15 minutes. Take the Lamb out of the oven and put it on a cutting board and cover with foil for ten minutes. I did what it said. Before I was about to take it out of the oven I used my meat thermometer to check the temperature. The thermometer read a chilling 78 degrees. I cursed and put it back in the oven. I turned the heat up to 425 and began to cook it more. Meanwhile everyone was getting hungry and the meat was simply not cooking...or very slowly rather. About 45 minutes went by and the meat was still at 125. I was planning on taking it out when it got to about 155 so it would sit for a bit and be about medium when we were going to eat it. More than an hour after it was supposed to come out of the oven the Lamb was finally at the correct temperature.

What did I do wrong? This was the first time I had ever cooked a leg of Lamb. I followed the directions but it just didn't work:( Either way the meat tasted fantastic when it was finally ready to was well worth the wait.


Soly said...

That really does look good.

Mary said...

I don't know, 30 minutes to me for a leg of lamb doesn't seem nearly enough. I would expect it to be around an hour and a half to come out medium so... Assuming, however, that I'm wrong, maybe your oven isn't circulating right? Or you opened the oven door too long? Both of those can reduce the heat and how quickly and evenly your food will cook. Anyway, it looks good! Better luck next time. :)

Katherine said...

Yes! that is one of the best cook books ever!

i haven't read that particular recipe but maybe your roast was bigger than what the recipe called for. Because like Mary said it should take longer than 30 minutes. maybe a foil tent would help after you put the water in so the meat will steam and cook faster. I have made an 8 lb roast before and it took about 2 hours in the oven before it was done. i pulled mine at 140 degrees for medium-rare. yum yum!:)

Jane said...

That looks so delicious and has started making my mouth water and stomach rumble. Only 1 1/2 until my baked potato and salad for lunch.

Sorry never cooked a leg of lamb before so no tips, other than hope for the best, prepare for the worst - always have an emergency starter ready, to keep everyone happy until main is served.

Michael said...

I vote for a mistake in the directions. 15 minutes per pound at 350, using water to make sure the drippings don't dry out is probably closer to correct. To get to medium would probably take a few minutes longer per pound.

I always roast with a meat thermometer in, and use The Joy of Cooking (because it is well proofed at this point) to give me a guide line on how long things should take too cook, so I can time events appropriately. Ultimately, the temp determines when I pull a roast out.

Your lamb looked well worth the wait!

Donna Binkholder said...

I've cooked a leg of lamb before and for me it always takes about and 1 hour-2 hours to cook. I do have to say you did do a fine job cooking it because it turned out great from the pictures I seen.

Mark said...

We had a good discussion and laugh over this one last night when Garrett called. "That thing had to be raw!" I think the book meant 15 minutes per pound.

I'll check the copy of the book he gave me. (Great gift btw.)

Miss Melanie said...

Nothing beats a meat thermometer. Take the meat out when it's 5-10 degrees away from doneness, because of the carryover cooking that occurs during the resting time. And if using a convection oven, take it out 10-15 degress away from desired doneness.

Miss B said...

it could be a feew things: typically its 15 to 20 min per pound but remember that any meat that has a bone in takes longer to cook. I have no idea why it just does. I cooked a bone in prime rib for xmas and it took an extra hour to cook.. the recipe said 20 min per lbs.... it should have been done in 3hrs, it took 4; and the meat around the bones was still mooing abit. Your oven could not be calibrated right as well.

next time!

Garrett said...

Yeah my mom told me the same thing as I was cooking it. She said 30 minutes would not be long enough but I thought it would work because the recipe sounded good.

Silver Spoon has so many good recipes!

I needed a backup plan on this occasion for took so long.

I never really thought about leaving the meat thermometer in...that seems like a good idea

Taylor said...

Another great way of cooking a leg of lamb is by searing it on all sides. It helps keep in the juices while it's cooking.
Also, next time try you should try crusting the lamb with mustard and then with the herbs. Gives it a little extra punch.

I've got some of my own recipes on my blog. Hopefully you'll check it out!

topher said...

That Leg of lamb needs to get on my rotissorie! (If Ellen will let me, she doesn't eat bambi) My father is the master with the leg of lamb. I watched and helped him many times. Lets eat!

jng2503 said...

That looks. SO good.

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