If you love food, wine and long lunches with friends, then come on in!! Today I’m opening the doors to my humble home and inviting you into my Sunday Roast Lamb Lunch with my friends. Take a peek behind the scenes, share some laughter, admire my gorgeous friends and ridiculously cute off spring, see my Baby Hands in action.
At the centre of it all, the pride and joy of my lunch – a classic Aussie Roast Lamb Leg with a flavour packed gravy. It’s Lambalicious!!
2 1/2 years ago, I was what I call “internet shy”. I tried to avoid having an internet presence. I had Facebook but rarely used it. I never left messages on blogs even if I tried and loved a recipe. I didn’t know what Pinterest or Instagram were. Twitter baffled me (it still does).
How things have changed! As I’ve continued down this path that has become my full time job, it became impossible not to open up. Because I love to cook to share with other people. Whether it’s sharing the food I make, or sharing the recipes I love here on RecipeTin Eats. And my very favourite foods always have some connection with my life. So by sharing my food, I have to share my life.
So today, I’m doing something pretty special that I’ve never done before. I’m opening up my home and inviting my readers inside to join my Sunday Roast Lamb Lunch with my fabulous friends. ❤️
It was supposed to be a Spring Lamb lunch out on my deck but unfortunately the weather wasn’t behaving ☔️ ☔️☔️ so at the last minute I had to drag everything indoors. 😭 It was a bit of a squish, but we made it happen!
I’m not really one for delicate table decorations and I don’t have a flourishing flower garden either. Plus, my fold up tables are pretty narrow…..so I thought I’d try my hand at doing edible table centrepieces using grapes with a few flowers stuck in there to make them a bit pretty. Weird or practical?? 😁
You know how people say that dogs look like their owners? Well, I’ve always said that Dozer and I are the exception. I mean, we couldn’t be more different – my jet black hair and his golden fur.
But when I lined these two photos up next to each other, I suddenly saw it. The resemblance is uncanny!!!
When it comes to a centrepiece for a gathering, there is nothing more Aussie than a Roast Lamb Leg – especially on a Sunday! Aussies love their lamb, and even though I have a huge soft spot for Slow Cooked Lamb Shoulder, when it comes to tradition, you can’t beat a lamb leg.
And if you want a crazy tender, crazy juicy, incredibly flavourful perfectly cooked roast lamb leg, there are just two very simple rules:
- Get the best quality lamb you can afford. It is worth every penny!
- Get a meat thermometer. Yes there are schmancy ones out there that cost over $100. Mine cost $5 from Ebay and I’ve had it for years and years, and it’s never failed me.
Which is why I am smiling in the photo above rather than being a stressed out wreck like contestants on cooking shows (letting them use meat thermometers would take way too much drama out of the shows). 😉
Look at how crazy juicy this lamb is! It was squirting juicy everywhere!! (PS You know full well those are not my hands carving up the lamb).
And what sort of Roast Lamb Leg would it be without gravy?? I like to add extra flavour into mine by roasting the lamb on garlic, then I squish the juices out as I make the gravy. I know straining makes for messy cleaning up, but it is SO worth it to make the gravy silky smooth!
I said I was opening up my home to readers, and there’s only so much I can show in a handful of photos so I’ve made a little video! Welcome to my Sunday Roast Lamb Lunch!
The great Aussie Roast Lamb Leg tradition. Friends. Family. Good food, wine and laughter.
I hope seeing how much fun I had with my friends at my Sunday Roast Lamb Lunch inspires you to have roast lamb soon! – Nagi x
PS When my mother saw these photos and saw the elderly couple in the photos, she was rather indignant, thinking I had invited my friend Ali’s parents. I had to calmly explain to her that they were Ali’s in-laws who were in town from Tassie, and that it would be impolite to not invite them because I had met them before. She kind of humph’d, and was only placated when I sent her home with an assortment of leftovers!!!
PS Getting up close and personal so you can see how ridiculously juicy this is! This lamb was cooked around 3 hours ago and it was still warm and juicy inside.
- 2.25 kg / 4.5lb lamb leg, bone in
- 1½ tbsp fresh rosemary leaves, finely chopped*
- 3 garlic cloves, minced*
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- 2 whole heads of garlic, halved horizontally (Note 1)
- Few sprigs rosemary *
- 4 tbsp flour
- 2½ cups beef broth / stock (Note 2)
- Take lamb out of fridge at least 1 hour before roasting. (Note 2)
- Rub: Combine rosemary, garlic and olive oil. Mix and set aside for 20 minutes+.
- Preheat oven to 220C/430F (fan forced / convection) (Note 3) with oven shelf in the middle.
- Place garlic cut side up in a roasting pan. Toss in rosemary sprigs.
- Turn the lamb over so the underside is facing up. Pour half the Rub on, add a good sprinkle of salt and pepper. Rub all over.
- Transfer into roasting pan, placing it on the garlic to elevate the lamb. Rub remaining rub + salt and pepper over lamb.
- Roast lamb for 20 minutes then turn down to 180C/350F (fan forced/convection) (Note 4). Roast for 1 hour - total of 1 hr 20 minutes.
- Remove lamb from oven. The internal temperature should be 55 - 60C/131 - 140F for medium rare (pictured). This will rise to 61 - 65C / 142 - 151F after resting. See notes for cook times - Note 5.
- Transfer lamb to plate, cover with foil and rest for 20 - 30 minutes.
- Make gravy straight away while roasting pan is hot.
- Remove rosemary sprigs. You should have around 4 - 5 tbsp of fat. If less, add butter. If much more, discard a bit.
- Place roasting pan on stove over medium heat. When the fat starts to bubble, then add flour. Mix flour in and cook for 1 minute.
- Pour in half the beef stock and mix to dissolve sludge in, then add remaining beef stock and mix.
- Use a potato masher (if you're really keen like me) to mush the garlic to squeeze out the flavour.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Simmer for a couple of minutes, stirring, until it starts to thicken. Take it off the stove BEFORE the gravy is the thickness you want because it will keep thickening.
- Strain into a bowl, mushing garlic to squeeze all the liquid out. Then pour into gravy boat.
- Serve lamb with gravy on the side, peas and Truly Crunchy Roast Potatoes. (Note 6)
1. The garlic elevates the lamb so it cooks more evenly and allows the fat to drip over the garlic so the flavour infuses into the drippings that then forms the base of the gravy. Place the garlic cut side up so the flavour infuses into the flesh of the lamb. You could put the lamb on a rack and put the garlic under the rack. You can use onion instead of or in addition to garlic.
It is not garlicky at all because when garlic roasts, it becomes sweet and caramelised. It is my big secret for making gravy!
2. Gravy for lamb is best made with beef stock/broth because it has a deeper flavour and makes the gravy a beautiful dark brown colour. Store bought is fine, though homemade rocks! If you cannot consume beef for religious or health reasons, then chicken broth can be substituted.
3. Bringing a lamb leg to room temperature before roasting makes a huge difference for more even cooking. Cold lamb leg = overcooked on the outside by the time the inside is cooked.
4. Oven temps for standard / no fan ovens: Initial high temp to start the browning at 240C/465F, then lower to 200C/390F for the remaining cook time.
5. INTERNAL TEMPERATURE of cooked lamb:
Medium rare (blush pink inside, as pictured): Temp out of oven 55-60C/131-140F. This will rise to 61-65C / 142-151F after resting.
Medium (barest hint of pink inside): out oven: 60–66°C, after resting: 66–70°C
Well done (least juicy, no pink at all): out of oven: 67–71°C, after resting: 71–75°C
COOK TIMES - refer to the table below the recipe. I highly recommend getting a meat thermometer for accuracy - only guaranteed way to get juicy lamb every time!
6. The lamb leg will stay warm for up to 1 hour. The inside is still warm even after 3 hours. For my Sunday Roast Lunch, I roasted the lamb legs separately before my guests arrived, and the first lamb leg was still warm inside when I served it at 1.30 (I took it out of the oven at 10.30 am). The crust wasn't that warm, but it didn't really matter because even if the lamb leg was hot, once sliced thin and served, the slices lose heat quickly. The warmth comes from the gravy!
So if you want roast veggies or Truly Crunchy Roast Potatoes, it's fine to make them while the lamb is resting. I don't recommend roasting at the same time in separate roasting pans because it will reduce the heat of the oven and you'll end up compromising both the veggies AND lamb. And if you roast the lamb ON veggies, then you won't have enough drippings for gravy.
7. Servings: A 2.25 kg lamb serves 6 very generously and 8 comfortably. The bone is around 400 - 500g, leaving around 1.8kg of meat. This shrinks to around 1.5 kg after cooking. 250g lamb per person for 6 / ~200g for 8 is sufficient - remember the lamb is sliced so it makes it seem like there is more!
8. Nutrition per serving, assuming 8 servings and that all the gravy is consumed.
Cooking Video! So you can see how simple this is to make!
ROAST LAMB COOK TIMES
Roast Lamb Leg nutrition per serving, assuming 6 servings and that all the gravy is consumed.
LIFE OF DOZER
DOZER. Don’t breathe your stinky dog breath over my friends while they eat!
And remember: EVERY day is a good day for lamb!!
MORE LAMB GOODNESS
Slow Roasted GREEK Lamb Leg – fall apart goodness!
Slow Roasted Lamb Shoulder – more fall apart goodness!!
PS Photos of my Sunday Roast Lamb Lunch were taken by Matt Kelson Photography. Can’t cook / host / bat Dozer away from food / stop Dozer from stealing food from small people and take photos at the same time, especially when I’m IN the photos!!!! ❤️