We have eaten out almost every night this week which is pretty rare because it’s expensive and I usually LOVE to cook. But with the non sleeping feral toddler sucking most of the energy straight out of me, it’s what we have done. And that’s OK because? On Thursday we won the meat raffle at the pub! And it’s not just any meat tray it was a cracking leg of lamb and a bottle of wine. Classy like. The meat was from our butcher so I knew it was going to be a cracker and this morning after a cooked breakfast I decided that we would roll a traditional roast dinner with all the trimmings. Classy like. Sometimes the classics just make everything better right?
2-3 kg leg o’ lamb (depending on how many mouths to feed)
Tablespoon plain flour
2 Tablespoons red currant jelly
2 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/2 bunch of mint, roughly chopped
: To start with I make incisions over the leg with the sharp point of the knife about 1cm wide and the same deep. Slice garlic and break up sprigs of rosemary into smaller little “trees”.
: Shove that garlic and rosemary in all those slits and drizzle over a little olive oil, lather in sea salt and pepper. Whack into an oven at say 180 degrees for 1-1.5 hours depending on size. I like my lamb a little pink.
: Get a small person to wash the vegies for you and cut into large chunks with same salt, pepper and rosemary over it’s back. Allow for 1 hour cooking time so chuck in whenever you know that the meat will be done by. For me, this was 30 mins into cooking because I knew the lamb would take 1.5 hours to cook. You know?
: Into a small saucepan chuck in 2 heaped tablespoons of good red currant jelly, 2 tablespoons of red wine vinegar and dissolve over heat.
: When dissolved throw in the mint and take off the heat to allow to sit a minute before transferring to a serving jug/bowl
: I find the older the jug, the better. This was my Grandma Dot’s and it pleases me no end to use it – especially on something that I know she used to make me which I adored. Circle of Life or something…
: Allow about 20 mins for your meat to rest. I know that seems a lot, and I know you think it will go cold, but it just won’t. Trust me. Wrap it in foil and then wrap it again in a tea towel and forget about it. Move onto that roasting tray for the gravy. Or as Harper likes to call it – the GRABY!
: Trim some beans (these local beauties from a neighbour did the trick nicely) but you could use broccolini, or peas, or whatever takes your fancy.
: I forgot to take more shots of the gravy making, but my step mother in law (that’s a mouthful!) showed me how to make ‘proper’ gravy and since I know, I haven’t looked back. It’s DEAD easy. Promise.
: You know how your pan has all those burnt, yummy bits in the bottom when you have taken the roasting rack out? Well that’s the gravy! Whack the hot roasting pan onto your stove top once you have taken your meat out rest. Throw in about a tablespoon of plain flour and scrape as much of those dark bits off with your spoon. Then add in water and stir. Stir. Stir. And then stir. Scraping/lifting all those bits up as you go. You could use stock if you had some, but water does the trick. It will start to thicken and look yum, take it off the heat and set aside. The darker the pan is when you start – the darker your gravy will be!
: Carve your meat, whack the greens on and then start to plate up. Chuck the gravy back onto the heat until hot again and transfer to a jug. Serve up and wait for the “oohs!” and “ahhs” that you will get. You will get them.
: Drown in gravy and mint sauce and devour. Can you see where I always use my finger to scrape the last bit of sauce from my plate? Classy like.
The roast is such an easy meal to make. Although it does require a little timing at the end – while it’s cooking you can sit back and drink wine and entertain guests and enjoy the smells of it roasting away in the oven. Chicken, pork, beef – it’s all the same principal and you can change the vegies to whatever is in season or you like. And the best bit? My very favourite bit? The leftover cold vegies smeared on toast the next day with a shit load of butter and lashings of salt and pepper. The meat on sambo’s I can leave for Rob, but those vegies? Mine. All mine.