I tell people not to buy anything special for my visit. The purpose of this trip is to teach people new ways to use ingredients they already love. So imagine my surprise when the first thing I saw in my San Francisco hosts’s fridge was a ginormous leg of lamb! She admitted that no, she doesn’t normally have one sitting around, but she’s always wondered how to make one … and maybe wanted to learn how to knock her family’s socks off at the holidays. I was all in!
Don’t be intimidated by either lamb or a roast! Believe it or not an old fashioned Sunday roast is way easier than your usual skillet chicken.
The key to a beautifully pink medium-rare roast is low and slow cooking. I turned the oven down to a mere 200F and cooked it for around 35 minutes per pound. This thing was a good five pounds, so that meant a solid three hours in the oven. However, you can use the same technique on any size roast. For best results, get yourself a cheap, trusty meat thermometer and check on the roast whenever you baste it.
Paleo Lamb Roast Ingredients
- 5 lb boneless leg of Lamb roast
- 1 head garlic
- 12-16 fresh sage leaves
- 8-10 large basil leaves
- 1 tbsp fresh oregano leaves (about 2 sprigs)
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup Fig vinaigrette
- 1 cup beef broth (or lamb if you have it!)
- 3-4 fresh figs for garnish
- 2 lbs baby carrots (or regular – use what you have!)
- 1 lb asparagus
- 4 large carrots (optional)
- 4 stalks celery (optional)
- Your roast will probably come in netting that holds it together. It’s sliced open like that because they had to
filetit to remove the bone.
- Very carefully pull the netting back so you can unroll your roast.
- Peel an entire head of garlic. Toss that into a food processor with the fresh sage, fresh basil, oregano, and salt. Pulse a few times until it’s nice and minced up, but not quite a paste. If you don’t want to dirty your food processor, feel free to go nuts with the knife skills and spend some quality time on mincing garlic and chiffonading the herbs.
- Either way, spread the garlic herb mix over the interior of the roast. Really work it into every crevice. Then re-roll your roast and pull the netting back over it.
- If you’re the sort of person who already owns a roasting rack then you probably don’t need this recipe. Use it if you’ve got it – but don’t stress if you don’t. You can make an impromptu, totally organic roasting rack with carrots and celery. Peel your large carrots and cut them in half lengthwise. Arrange the carrots and celery in a single layer, ½ inch apart at the bottom of your roasting pan and nestle the roast on top of them.
- Hour 0 – Pour half the fig vinaigrette over the roast and 1 cup of beef or lamb broth in the bottom of the pan. Put it in a preheated 200F oven for an hour.
- Hour 1 – Pour the rest of the vinegarette over the roast and put it back in the oven for another hour.
- Hour 2- Baste the roast in any juices at the bottom of the pan. If all the juices have evaporated then add another cup of beef broth. Nestle the baby carrots around the edge of the pan and put it back in the oven for another hour.
- Hour 3 – Check the meat thermometer and baste again. You want the roast to reach 145F before taking it out of the oven. If it’s not up to 145F yet, check every 15 minutes until it comes to temperature.
- Once you remove the roast from the oven it needs to sit for at least 15-20 minutes before you slice it.
- Turn the heat up to 400. Cut the woody ends off the bottom of your asparagus, drizzle them with 1 tbsp olive oil, salt, and pepper, and put the pan into the oven to bake while the roast rests.
Gluten-Free Gravy (Not Paleo)
- ½ cup Lamb drippings/juices + 1 tbsp
- 1/4 cup red wine
- 2 bay leaves
- ½ tsp pepper
- 1/4 cup red wine
- 2 tsp corn starch
- Pour the lamb drippings and red wine in a small saucepan. If you don’t have ½ cup of drippings then supplement with beef or lamb broth. Add the bay leaves and pepper and bring it to a boil. Let it reduce by half.
- Whisk together the reserved juices/broth and corn starch until you have a lump-free slurry. Reduce the heat to medium and slowly pour in the slurry, whisking aggressively. Remove it from the heat and keep whisking for another 30 seconds so it doesn’t get lumpy.
RENDER YOUR LEFTOVER FAT!
See that thick ring of fat around the exterior of your lamb? That stuff is amazing! Set out a bowl and ask people to toss their fat in there.
Once the roast’s meat is all gone, toss your collected fat into a crockpot with 2 tbsp water and leave it on low. It will slowly melt, rendering it down. (You can also do this in a saucepan over medium-low heat.)
When it’s completely melted and liquid, strain it through a fine mesh strainer or several layers of folded cheesecloth. You can store your rendered lamb fat in the fridge for a month.
Rendered lamb fat is an amazing addition to your Paleo pantry.
Leftover Lamb hash
- 1 cup roughly chopped or
- ½ cup roughly chopped leftover carrots
- 2 cups leftover roast potatoes (white potatoes or white sweet potatoes)
- ½ yellow onion, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tbsp rendered lamb fat
Lamb Hash Directions
- This assumes you have some leftover potatoes or white sweet potatoes in your fridge. If not, you can always roast up an extra potato or two once the lamb comes out of the oven. This is a quick way to use up your leftovers on a tasty hot breakfast or
fastand easy dinner.
- Add 1 tbsp rendered fat to a large skillet with high sides. Toss in your onion and cook for 2-3 minutes, or until translucent. Then add the garlic and cook for another 1-2 minutes, stirring often.
Literallydump everything else into the skillet. Your cooked leftover potatoes (or white sweet potatoes), carrots, and bits of lamb all go into the skillet and get stirred around until all the bits are pretty much evenly distributed.
- Cook for another 4-5 minutes, until everything is warmed through.
- Now use a silicone spatula to gently mash everything down, squishing your potatoes flat. Let them crisp up on one side for 3-4 minutes, or until golden brown. Turn everything over to the best of your ability – don’t worry, it doesn’t need to be in a single smooth layer. Just get the other side some exposure to the heat so it can crisp up, too.
- Serve fresh and hot. The mingled flavors and crispy texture leave me looking forward to the leftover hash as much as the original roast!