Tasty, succulent and perfect for Christmas day.
1 leg of lamb weighing approximately 2kg (a good 4 lb)
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
Finely grated zest 1 orange
1 Tbsp thyme leaves or a mix of thyme and rosemary
1 tsp crushed coriander seeds
70g (about 2½ oz) butter, softened sufficiently so it can be spread over lamb
Flaky sea salt
½ cup dry white wine
Squeezed juice 1 orange (about ¼ cup juice)
3 Tbsp standard flour
2 cups light stock or unsalted chicken stock
1 Tbsp orange juice or 2 tsp pomegranate molasses
1 Preheat oven to 200°C (400°F). Remove any large lumps of fat from lamb and pat dry with paper towels. In a small bowl mix black pepper, ½ teaspoon of salt, orange zest, thyme and coriander with 1 tablespoon of the butter. Make deep incisions in the lamb and stuff in the flavourings. Spread softened butter over lamb with a knife. Put lamb in a shallow roasting tin (choose an elongated tin, not a round one). The lamb can be prepared up to 2 hours ahead and kept in a coolish place (not the fridge, because the butter topping will split and peel off as soon as you move the lamb, but not in a hot kitchen either, and cover with a fly-protector or tin foil).
2 Sprinkle with sea salt and roast for 30 minutes. Remove lamb from oven, baste and pour over white wine. Return lamb to oven and roast for a further 15 minutes. Remove lamb from oven, baste and pour over orange juice. Bake for a further 15 minutes for medium-blushed lamb. Remove lamb from oven, baste again, then transfer it to a board and let it rest for 10-12 minutes before carving. Next, make gravy. Tilt roasting tin and after a few minutes, scoop off fat.
3 Set roasting tin over a medium heat and stir in flour. Blend in stock, let it come to a gentle boil and cook through for a minute or two, then season with salt (about ¾ teaspoon, but it may need more depending on the saltiness of the stock or vegetable water used). Add orange juice or pomegranate molasses, taste and adjust seasoning. Transfer gravy to a saucepan, scraping it all in, cover with a lid, and reheat just before serving.
4 Slice lamb thinly and transfer to a heated serving platter or plates. Serve with hot gravy and vegetables.
Read more about making gravy here Classic Roast Lamb Gravy