Roast leg of lamb with real gravy – Willow Creek Style

The leg of Lamb before roasting

The other day we had a leg of Lamb from a butchery in George called Hartmans. Roasted, as simply as possible, it was the finest piece of lamb we have had in a long time. Tender as a mother’s parting words. And delicious with a pot of real gravy to go with it.

You will need
1 x 2kg Leg of Lamb
2 large onions
6 – 8 sprigs of thyme
Willow Creek Director’s Reserve Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Sea salt and freshly milled black pepper
500 ml homemade chicken stock

[or use Nomu Fond]

Willow Creek Director’s Reserve Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Gravy
This was a bit of a busk as I played with of some of the ingredients to get the right flavours.

2 heaping tablespoons blackcurrant or red currant jam or jelly
2 Tbs red wine vinegar
100ml Crème de Cassis
liquid from the roasting pan
500 ml Chicken Stock
1 heaping Tbs tomato paste
2 tsp Nomu Beef Fond – more if you need it
kneaded butter [equal weight soft butter & flour mashed to a paste] sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Lamb after roasting, while resting

What you’ll do

Set the oven at 180C.

The lamb
With a sharp knife, make fine cuts in the fat on the lamb, this will make it release its fat and crisp up. Chop the onions roughly. Place the onions is a roasting pan and place the thy sprigs in the middle of the pan.  Season the lamb generously with the olive oil, salt and pepper. Do this on a wooden board and then lift it onto the onions.  Roast for 1 hour at 180C and then a further 40 – 60 minutes at 160C until no blood shows when poked with a metal skewer.  Remove from the oven place on a rack and cover with a sheet of foil to rest the meat. Remove the thyme sprigs.

The Real Lamb Gravy

The real gravy
In a saucepan place the jam or jelly and the vinegar.  Bring them to the boil and caramelise, only to a light caramel.  Have ready the crème de cassis and immediately pour it onto the caramel, be quick and careful not to burn yourself. Add the liquid and the onions from the roasting dish and the extra chicken stock, the tomato paste and the beef fond.  Do not season with salt and pepper now.  Reduce the gravy at least by half so that it is richly flavoured.  Add more beef fond if you want to give it bit more oomph. Thicken it with the kneaded butter to your desired thickness. Season to taste with sea salt and ground black pepper.  If you like, you may strain the gravy at this stage, though I loved the soft onion and texture.

Serve with a potato of your choice and a green vegetable.

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