Moroccan méchoui lamb is traditionally prepared by roasting a whole lamb on a spit, very slowly, until the meat falls off the bone. I love preparing a lamb roast on a lazy Sunday morning, letting it cook for the whole day. It makes my little house smell like a home! These flavours are so wonderfully Moroccan, and I dare you to cook lamb that is more tender than this. Serve with a couscous salad or your favourite roast veg and seasonal greens.
Makes: 6 serves
Takes: 10 minutes to prep; 5-6 hours to cook
1 whole leg (or shoulder) of lamb, approximately 1.6–2kg
50g butter, at room temperature
6 cloves garlic, crushed
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons fresh rosemary leaves, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1⁄2 teaspoon turmeric pinch of cayenne pepper
Method: Make a dozen or so incisions deep into the lamb with the tip of a sharp knife. Combine the butter, garlic, salt, pepper, rosemary and spices. Spread the mixture over the entire leg or shoulder of lamb, working some of the butter into the cuts made with the knife. At this point you can cover the lamb and marinate it overnight, or preheat your oven to 220°c.
Place the lamb in a large roasting pan with 1 cup of water. Put the pan in the hot oven and immediately reduce the heat to 160°c. Roast the lamb, basting occasionally, for 5–6 hours until the meat is tender and the lamb has a crisp, dark crust. Allow the lamb to rest for 15 minutes before serving.
Tip: Sometimes I like to make a sauce to serve with the lamb, too. Reserve the cooking juices from the roasting pan and add 1 x 400g can chopped tomatoes, 1 tablespoon brown sugar and 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar. Bring to a gentle simmer until the tomatoes are slightly reduced. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.