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Delicious Leg of Lamb With Fresh Herbs Recipe

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When there's a special occasion and we feel like a real treat, I buy a nice leg of lamb for my family.

Italian leg of lamb recipe

Italian leg of lamb recipe

Roast leg of lamb is a delicious dish that is eaten all over the UK, especially in the spring. I am very fortunate because my father was a professional chef, and so he taught me many tricks of the trade and many incredible recipes.

We don't eat much meat in my family because it's not healthy to eat too much red meat, but when there's a special occasion and we feel like a real treat, I buy a nice leg of lamb, and I am confident that my whole family are going to be very happy indeed.

This leg of lamb recipe is very special because of the fresh herbs. I grow herbs in my garden, and there's nothing more pleasurable than picking them ready for a great recipe.

Don't worry if you haven't got fresh ones because dried or frozen herbs will do the trick. However, do try to add plenty of rosemary and some fresh cloves of garlic so that the dish will produce deliciously flavoured meat and wonderful gravy.

Here in the UK, and in much of Europe, lamb is very popular. It isn’t cheap, but it is absolutely delicious and I hope my leg of lamb recipe will inspire you to go ahead and give it a try.

Although I was born in the UK, my parents were from Italy, and there they cook lamb at Easter time—so I remember eating lamb at times of happiness and celebration. They would typically stew chunks of lamb with artichokes, but that's another recipe for a different article.

I serve this lamb with roast parsnips and special roast potatoes, French beans and if I'm really in the mood, broccoli with bechamel and parmesan sauce.

Red wine goes well with this meal, and a light dessert such as vanilla ice cream with fresh strawberries, or fresh peaches and cream, would be perfect.

My friends, who are from Wisconsin, invited us over for a meal. They served us delicious lamb kebabs and told us that lamb is not eaten very much in their part of the USA. None of us was sure why this is the case—perhaps you may know—if so, do leave a comment.

Cook Time

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

20 min

2 hours 40 min

3 hours

4 to 6 servings


For the lamb:

  • 4 lbs (2 kg) leg of lamb
  • 1 crushed garlic clove
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chopped mint
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley
  • 4 oz soft butter
  • Seasoning

For the gravy:

  • 1 large tablespoon plain flour
  • 3 fl oz red wine
  • 1/2 pint (275 ml) vegetable stock


  1. Preheat your oven to gas mark 5 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). If you have a fan-assisted oven, 10% less heat is needed.
  2. Mix all the herbs plus 1 level teaspoon of salt and some ground pepper into the butter.
  3. Take your joint of lamb and stab it all over the top with a skewer or large-toothed fork.
  4. Rub the butter mixture all over the top of the joint.
  5. Place it in a sheet of tin foil and seal it up so that no juice or steam can escape.
  6. Cook for 2 hours. If you want it well done, add another 10 minutes at this stage.
  7. Then open up the foil and cook for another 30 minutes so that it gets lovely and brown on the top. The meat will be pink; it's supposed to be that way.
  8. Put your meat on a warm serving dish and put it in a warm place.
  9. Make the gravy: Take the juices that have come from the meat and spoon off most of the fat. You will see that they are floating on top of the juice. Put the fat in a bowl and leave the juices in the tin.
  10. Put the tin on a medium heat and sprinkle in the flour when the juices start bubbling. Make a smooth paste. Cook for a little while to brown. Stir with a wooden spoon.
  11. Now slowly stir in the wine and the stock, stirring all the time to avoid lumps.
  12. Cook until it is bubbling. It should be a thin gravy. Season to taste.

© 2013 Giovanna