When I was down to host a dinner party for my siblings and their partners I knew I had to make something that ticked a lot of boxes. It had to be on the healthy side because we had just got back from our skiing holiday where far too much cheese, wine and chocolate was consumed. It had to be something that I could quite easily prepare before everyone arrived as G was at work so couldn’t assist and I didn’t want to be hovering around the hob cooking when I wanted to catch up with everyone. On top of that, it had to taste amazing because I feel as though they all have pretty high standards when it comes to food and I wanted to impress!
I enjoy hosting parties and because I was an events planner at university I never like to do anything by halves. The evening had to have a theme and that would not only involve the food, but the decorations and the attire for the night.
We bring you… ‘The Aegean’.
I absolutely LOVE Greek food, whether that is a simple Greek salad, an array of freshly baked fish, honey baklava or feta…with anything. As soon as I think of a Mediterranean holiday, I think of sitting outside for dinner indulging on local cuisine that has so much flavour and tastes unbelievably fresh. So, it was a no brainer that we had to have a Grecian themed dinner and since we’d been having such rubbish weather in London, I thought there couldn’t be anything better than bringing the sunshine of Greece to G and I’s apartment.
Once all the guests had enjoyed a freshly made mojito, the evening started with falafel bites (recipe here) and a Greek Salad, which was the perfect size and combination to get everyone going. For dessert I served up honey frozen yoghurt, blueberries and the classic Greek dish…brownies – okay, due to time constraints/complexity I thought it was a safe option that everyone would love, plus I sprinkled pistachios over them to add a Grecian twist, that counts right?
But, the main event was what came in between…
Slow roasted Greek leg of lamb.
If this doesn’t get your taste buds watering I don’t know what will.
I have never been a big ‘lamb’ eater, in fact in the past I have actively avoided it because it is fatty, pink and a bit of a faff to eat. BUT slow roasted leg of lamb has to be one of the most incredible ways to try this meat if you have ever been put off in the past – it will change you. With an immense array of ingredients and herbs put into the mix, the flavour is full of life. You slow roast the leg for over 6 hours and so when it comes to serving, the meat falls off the bone in a ‘too-go-to-be-true’ way. Goodbye to dry, fatty and bland lamb that is now a thing of the past, hello to lamb that you shove into the oven and can forget about, that tastes incredible too!
I roasted up 2 legs of lamb in this recipe as the 2kg one in the supermarket just did not seem enough for 6 people. However, there was a lot left over and so it could have served a few more guests. If you are cooking for less, just half all the ingredients below and use 1 leg of lamb! It’s as easy as that.
I plated the lamb up and put it in the middle of the table for guests to help themselves. I also ensured that the slow roasted onion and herbs were on the dish too for a little bit of extra flavour. Then I served up cubed roasted potatoes with a huge green, avocado and pomegranate salad. It is an extremely easy dinner party dish that, whilst it takes a while in the oven, is worth it in the end because you don’t have to prepare or cook whilst your guests are there and it tastes amazing with little effort from you.
Any questions? Leave a comment or email me here!
12 cloves of garlic
2 x 2/2.5kg leg of lamb
Salt and pepper
6 tsp. paprika
6 tsp. onion granules
4 tbsp. olive oil
4 large onions (2x red, 2x white)
1 packet of fresh thyme (about 10 sprigs)
1 packet of fresh rosemary (about 6 sprigs)
6 tsp. dried oregano
6 dried bay leaves
250m lemon juice (5-6 lemons)
500 ml white wine
700 ml chicken stock
– Preheat the oven to 220°C Fan.
– Use a small knife to make about 20 incisions all over each leg of lamb (mostly on top).
– Cut about 8 cloves of garlic into slithers and push them into the incisions.
– Generously sprinkle the lamb legs all over with salt, pepper, paprika and onion granules. Drizzle with olive oil and rub into the lamb.
– Place the lamb into a large roasting tray for about 30 minutes until they have a nice brown crust.
– Remove from the oven and turn it down to 160°C Fan.
– Turn the legs of lamb upside down. Add the remaining ingredients into the tray, inc. the remaining garlic cloves. The liquid should fill a few inches of the tray and the lamb.
– Cover with a lid or tightly with a couple of layers of foil. Bake for 3 and ½ hours.
– Remove the roast from the oven and remove foil. Turn the lamb over so it is top side up.
– Cover again and roast for a further 2 and ½ hours (the meat should pull apart with a fork).
– Remove cover and roast for a further 20-30 minutes to brown.
– Remove carefully from the oven and transfer lamb onto a serving platter.
– Cover with foil and rest for 30 minutes.
– Strain the remaining liquid into a clear jug. The fat will rise to the top, scoop/pour most of it out.
Serve lamb with sauce on the side.