Jill Dupleix is well known for her easy, fast and fabulous food, and her ground-breaking books including Simple Food, Very Simple Food and I Hate To Cook.
I love the way Jill prepares this leg of lamb. She slashes the meat almost to the bone then ties it in shape before roasting. Once it is cooked and rested, the string is removed and the thick slices of meat are deftly sliced off the bone, everyone receiving a crusty skin topping with their slice of juicy meat.
3 Tbsp roughly chopped parsley and/or mint
2 anchovies in oil, chopped
3 cloves garlic, crushed
2 Tbsp salted capers, rinsed
1 Tbsp coarsely grated lemon rind
80 g soft fresh breadcrumbs
3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
1 leg of lamb, approx. 2 kg (about 4½ pounds)
Cress or rocket (arugula) leaves for serving
1 lemon, quartered
8 or more medium-sized potatoes, skins on
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp thyme and/or rosemary sprigs
1 Pre-heat the oven to 220°C (425°C).
2 Combine the parsley, mint, anchovies, garlic, capers, lemon rind and breadcrumbs in a bowl. Add the olive oil and squish the mixture into a soft mushy paste with your hands.
3 Holding the leg of lamb with its meatiest side on top, cut right through the meat, almost to the bone, at 2 cm (about 1”) intervals. Push the stuffing down between each lamb ‘steak’, re-shape the meat and tie with kitchen string. Place in a large roasting pan.
4 Drizzle a little extra olive oil over and bake for 20 minutes. Reduce the heat to
200°C (400°F) and bake for 1 hour more, then leave to rest for 10 minutes.
5 Remove the string and carve, parallel to the bone, to form chunky fingers of crisp skin and meat.
6 Arrange on warm plates, drizzle with the juices from the roasting pan and scatter with cress or rocket. Serve with lemon wedges.
Recipes by Jill Dupleix from The Great Australian Cookbook
1 Heat the oven to 200°C (400°F).
2 Scrub the potatoes, pat dry and coat lightly in about 1 Tbsp olive oil. Scatter with sea salt, place on the oven rack and bake for 1 hour or until soft inside.
3 Raise the oven heat to 240°C (475°F). Place the potatoes on a baking tray lined with baking paper (baking sheet lined with parchment paper) and punch each potato a few times to flatten it. Push it in at the sides to raise it in the middle, drizzle the remaining olive oil over the top, and scatter generously with sea salt, coarsely ground black pepper, thyme and rosemary.
4 Bake for 30 minutes or until ridiculously crisp, golden and scorched on the edges, and serve hot.
The extra-crisp little bits around the edges belong to the cook!