Oregano Roasted Leg of Lamb with Oil-Cured Olive Vinaigrette
By Midsummer, boneless leg of lamb takes full advantage of the fresh bounty of the garden. Served atop a caramelized mixture of fennel, onions and colorful sweet peppers, the roasted meat highlights the subdued tannins, black fruits, spice, and dried plum flavor profiles of the Stonestreet Monolith. Additionally, the concentrated flavor found in dried oregano and briny oil-cured olives mimics the well-rounded earthy finish of the wine. - Chef Dan Trudeau
Yield: 8 portions, with lamb leftovers
For the lamb:
- 1 Each - Leg of lamb, boneless, 4-6 pounds
- 3 Tbsp - Dry oregano, substitute with fresh, only if necessary
- 2 Tbsp - Salt, kosher
- 1 Tbsp - Black pepper, ground
- 3 Each - Garlic cloves, peeled, minced
- 1 Tbsp - Red wine vinegar
- 3 Tbsp - Extra virgin olive oil
- 1 Cup - Red wine, preferably the Stonestreet Monolith Cabernet Sauvignon
For the vinaigrette:
- ½ Cup - Oil-cured olives, without pits, finely chopped
- ½ Cup - Balsamic Vinegar
- ¾ Cup - Canola or Vegetable oil
- ¼ Cup - Extra virgin olive oil
- ¼ Cup - Parsley, finely chopped to taste.
- Salt and black pepper (the olives will contribute a lot of saltiness)
For the vegetables:
- 4 Tbsp - Canola or Vegetable oil
- 1½ Cups - Fennel bulb, fresh, diced small
- ½ Cup - Yellow onion, diced small
- ¾ Cup - Red bell pepper, diced small
- ¾ Cup - Yellow bell pepper, diced small
- 12 Each - Garlic cloves, peeled, sliced thinly
- ½ Cup - Dry white wine
- ¾ Cup - Brown lamb stock, other meat/vegetable stock, or water to taste
- Salt and Black pepper
- 1 Cup - Arugula, or other flavorful green (spinach, mustard greens, chard), coarsely chopped
- To taste, Butter or extra virgin olive oil
You will need a blender, butcher’s twine, a large skillet, meat thermometer and oven-safe roasting pan for this recipe.
Place lamb into a large bowl and remove any stringed truss (if provided) and open boneless leg to expose the interior of the meat. Season the entire roast with the dry oregano, salt and pepper. Set aside. Combine garlic and vinegar in a small bowl and set aside for 5 minutes stirring once to mix thoroughly. Place the garlic mixture, oil, and wine into a blender and puree the mixture. Rub the blended mixture over entire surface of lamb to coat, and tie leg into cylindrically shaped roast. Place lamb into roasting pan and allow it to temper for two hours.
Preheat oven to 450º.
Place thermometer in center of thickest part of roast. Place roast in oven for 20 minutes and then reduce heat to 325º. Position your roast so that you can see the internal temperature without having to open oven door. Baste roast with meat juices every 20 minutes and remove roast when internal temperature reaches 130º, approximately 1 hour. Meanwhile, you can prepare the vinaigrette and caramelized vegetables.
In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients of the vinaigrette and use the salt and pepper to adjust to your preference. The olives do contribute a fair amount of saltiness. Set aside for later.
In a large skillet over medium high heat, add 1 Tbsp of oil. Once oil shimmers, add fennel and sauté (approx. 10 minutes) until well caramelized, stirring every few minutes. Season with 1 tsp of salt. Remove fennel from pan to container to set aside. Repeat the process with the onions and peppers, individually, but sauté these for only 5 minutes each, combining fennel, onion, and both peppers in the side container.
Once lamb has been removed from the oven, use the ten-minute resting period for the meat to finish your vegetables. Return the sauté pan to medium high heat. Add the garlic to the pan and add a bit of extra virgin oil or butter to just begin cooking. Wilt the garlic with little caramelization. Add the wine and reduce heat to medium. Reduce the wine to almost dry then add the stock, broth or water of your choice. Combine all vegetables into the pan, stir well to coat with the glazing juices, and season with salt and pepper. Add more olive oil or butter to adjust glaze thickness and consistency. Remove the pan from heat and add the arugula, toss gently to combing.
Remove the truss from the roast and slice the roast in half lengthwise. Rotate one half of the roast onto its flat inner surface and slice crosswise thinly. Portion vegetable onto plates or service platter and add lamb slices atop the mixture. Stir the vinaigrette well to incorporate ingredients again. Season the lamb with salt, and sauce the meat with the vinaigrette. Make sure to spoon some olive pieces amongst the vegetable mixture, too. Garnish with arugula or other greens and herbs. This dish can be prepared ahead and served chilled or at room temperature.