Step aside roast chicken – there’s a new favourite roast in town. It is the super easy, one-pot Greek roast lamb with potatoes and fennel. For ages I have avoided making roast lamb – not because I don’t like it (we have worked out our issues) but mostly because leg of lamb costs a fortune and feeds a small army. For a family of four, with a picky 4 year old, it doesn’t make sense. Not sure when butterflied leg of lamb (same cut with the bone removed) became so readily available but it can now be found in most supermarkets and it is significantly cheaper, cooks a lot quicker and is crazy delicious.
All this roast needs is a tiny bit of of seasoning and away you go! It will perfume your house with the most amazing foodie smells (that will be the garlic and rosemary) and make you look like a genius chef with absolutely minimal effort. I swear, this is easy enough to throw together when you stagger home late from work – pop it in the oven while you have a bath, glass of wine in hand (or march kids off to bed – more realistic in my case) and you have a delicious meal about an hour later.
This is the perfect recipe to road test the beautiful Scanpan Roasting Pan which I was sent to review. Before the blog, I never had any nice pots or pans – never had enough cash for them to be honest. But buying cheap cookware is very counterproductive and literally the definition of false economy – I can’t count the trays and pans I have thrown out over the years because they warped or peeled after a few uses. The Scanpan feels weighty and has a special “frying pan base” that can be used in the oven, grill and on the stove. It is a dream to clean too – always a huge plus. I am itching to try other products from their range – all my old cheapo pots and pans are not allowed in the new kitchen (seriously folks, the kitchen remodel should be completed soon, fingers crossed).
And now for the roast… The only thing to be a little watchful of is the cooking time which is affected by the size of the lamb. My cooking time is for 900g/2lbs but you will need to adjust if you have a larger roast. The vegetables may need to cook a little longer – they are ready when the potatoes are tender when pierced with a fork. You can use celeriac instead or in addition to the fennel.
One-pot Greek Roast Lamb with potatoes and fennel
900g/2lbs butterflied leg of lamb
6 large potatoes (such as Maris Piper) skin on, sliced into medium rounds
1 large fennel bulb, sliced into medium rounds
4 red onions, sliced into medium rounds
4 garlic cloves, sliced
1/2 lemon – or more to taste
2 tsp anchovy paste
1 tsp garlic paste
3 sprigs rosemary
3 sprigs thyme
2 tsp dried oregano (wild Greek oregano if you can find it)
white cooking wine – or lamb stock
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to season
1. Preheat the oven to 230C (450F). Put the oven rack on the lower half of the oven.
2. Rub the anchovy and garlic paste all over the lamb. Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with a little rosemary and thyme.
3. Arrange all the sliced vegetables, slightly overlapping, over the bottom of the pan. Add the sliced garlic and sprinkle with the remaining rosemary, thyme and oregano. Squeeze half a lemon over the vegetables and drizzle with a little olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and add enough white wine to just cover the vegetables (you can also use stock instead of wine).
4. Set the rack over the vegetables and place the lamb, skin side up, on it. Drizzle with a little olive oil.
5. Roast for 15 minutes in the hot oven then lower the temperature to 180C (350F) and cover loosely with foil. Cook for another 15-20 minutes (depending on how rare you like it – it is best when a little rare) then take the meat out of the oven and rest it, covered loosely with foil, for 15 minutes.
6. The potatoes should be done by the time the meat has rested. Slice the lamb and serve with the vegetables and a nice Greek salad.