Slow-cooked oven-baked lamb (kleftiko)
lamb forequarter pieces
potatoes, peeled and halved if large
salt and freshly ground black pepper
whole unpeeled garlic cloves
250 ml (1 cup) water
Greek salad, to serve
Level of difficulty: easy
To preheat a fourno (wood-fired oven), light it 2–3 hours before cooking, so the coals burn down to embers and the heat is radiant at about 350°C. If you like meat browned, make sure the oven is hotter at the start (see note).
Place the lamb in a roasting pan. Push the potato in and around meat. Season with the salt and pepper, then drizzle generously with the olive oil. Scatter over the herbs and garlic, then squeeze lemon juice over the meat and add the water. Cover and seal tightly with foil. Roast for 4 hours.
Serve with Greek salad.
While this dish is traditionally cooked in a wood-fired oven, you can also use a conventional oven preheated to 150°C. Increase the cooking time to 5 hours.
SBS cook’s notes
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55–60 g, unless specified.
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