In Camille’s Kitchen: Roasted Leg of Lamb with Spring Onions and Pea Medley

I had a great time working with Superior Farms last week to teach my online students how to make a springtime classic: Leg of lamb. I know lamb seems intimidating, especially if you are new to large cuts of meat, but my method simplifies the process. I love doing the online demos, because it helps folks to see me in my own kitchen, going through the steps, and lets students to ask questions in real time.

This recipe is a love letter to spring. If it piques your interest, feel free to reach out here to book a lamb demo of your own, or if you live in the New York area, have me build a menu around it for a private dinner. Give it a try – the anchovy butter takes it right over the top and it’s one of my current faves!

Roasted Leg of Lamb with Spring Onions and Pea Medley

INGREDIENTS

For the leg of lamb
1 bone-in leg of lamb 
2 ounces (1 can) anchovies packed in olive oil, drained
Leaves from 6 fresh basil (2 heaping tablespoons leaves)
4 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
4 ounces unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
Cracked black pepper
Kosher salt
1 lemon

For the pea medley
1 pound frozen peas
½ pound sugar snap peas
¼ cup spring onion (scallions if you cannot find spring onions)
2 tablespoons garlic
1 Tablespoon mint
½ tablespoon basil
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup olive oil
¼ cup water

PREPARATION

Heat oven to 425 degrees. Use a small sharp knife to make about a dozen incisions, each about 2 inches deep, through the fat that covers the top of the meat. Using a mortar and pestle or a blender, blend 2/3 of the anchovies, basil and the garlic cloves into a chunky paste. Using your fingers, press paste deeply into incisions.

Mix remaining anchovies and the butter into a paste. Smear this mixture all over the surface of the roast. Season liberally with black pepper and salt. Place the lamb on a rack in a roasting pan, fat side up, and squeeze the lemon halves over. Pour the wine around the roast into the pan.

Roast the lamb for 15 minutes, then reduce heat to 350 degrees and roast until internal temperature reaches 130 to 135 degrees (for medium-rare), about another 60 to 90 minutes. If possible, for the last 15 minutes of cooking, use convection or a broiler to crisp the fat on the roast.

Remove pan from the oven, remove rack from the pan, and let the roast rest on the rack for at least 15 to 20 minutes. The internal temperature will rise to about 140 to 145 degrees.

Meanwhile, cut sugar snap peas in half. In a large pot of salted water cook the sugar snap peas. Shock in cold water and set aside.

In a Dutch oven, warm the olive oil over low heat and add the garlic. Cook garlic till golden brown, about 1 minute.

Add the spring onion, mint and basil. Cook for a few seconds. Add frozen peas and cook for 3 minutes, constantly stirring. Add water and cook for another minute.

Take ¼ of frozen pea mixture and much of the cooking liquid as possible and puree. Add pureed peas as well as blanched sugar snap peas back to pan. Mix well and cool.

Reheat to serve.

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