A flavorful braising liquid with wine, citrus and honey makes this leg of lamb as delicious as it is easy. A few aromatic vegetables enhance the savory sauce. Carve lamb using this easy method and serve the slices topped with a tzatziki recipe alongside couscous or a lentil salad.
This recipe was featured as part of our Easter Food Recipe Slideshow.
For more, see How to Cook Lamb Loin Chops.
- Yield: 8 to 10 servings
- Difficulty: Easy
- Total: 55 min, plus 4h15 of cooking
- 1 (5-1/2- to 6 pounds) bone-in leg of lamb
- 1 bottle (750 milliliters) dry red wine, such as Zinfandel
- 1 1/2 cups low sodium chicken broth
- 1/3 cup honey
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- Finely grated zest of a medium orange
- Juice of 1 medium orange
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt, plus more for seasoning the sauce
- 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper, plus more for seasoning the sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
- 4 teaspoons olive oil
- 3 medium garlic heads, halved horizontally
- 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary (5 to 6 inches)
- 1 medium fennel bulb, trimmed and thinly sliced
- 1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
- Let the lamb rest at room temperature for 1 hour. Heat the oven to 475°F and place a rack in the middle.
- Meanwhile, prepare the braising liquid. Place wine, broth, honey, mustard, zest and juice in a medium saucepan over medium heat and whisk to combine. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the honey is dissolved in the liquid, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Combine the measured salt and pepper and cilantro in a small bowl. Rub the lamb with the olive oil, then rub it evenly with the cilantro mixture. Place the lamb fat side up in a large roasting pan and roast until the surface is nicely browned, about 30 minutes.
- Remove the lamb from the oven and reduce the heat to 350°F. Pour the braising liquid into the pan and add the garlic heads, cut side down. Scatter the rosemary, fennel and onion around the pan and carefully cover with foil (you will probably need two overlapping pieces). Return the lamb to the oven and braise until the meat is very tender and pulls easily from the bone, about 2 1/2 hours. Remove foil and return lamb to oven until browned and juices are bubbly, about 30 minutes longer.
- Place the lamb on a cutting board and cover loosely with foil. Place a fine-mesh colander over a medium saucepan and strain the braising liquid, pressing out the solids; discard the solids. Using a large spoon, skim and discard excess fat from the surface of the braising liquid (you can also use a fat separator). Heat the braising liquid over medium-high heat until boiling. Continue boiling until reduced to about 1 1/2 cups, about 25 minutes. Taste and season with salt and pepper if necessary. Carve the lamb and serve with the sauce.