Spring is the season to eat lamb. With the ready availability of pre-boned and rolled easy-carve lamb, it’s easy to make a stuffed and rolled roast leg of lamb.
1 preserved lemon
4 tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves
1 tbsp chopped basil
2 tbsp pesto
1 x 1.5 kg easy-carve leg of lamb
salt and freshly ground black pepper
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.
Preheat oven to 180°C.
Soak the preserved lemon in cold water for 10–15 minutes. Drain, discard the pulpy centre and dice the zest finely. Mix with the herbs and pesto.
Remove the string from the leg of lamb and spread the meat out flat. Sprinkle the lemon and pesto mix in the centre. Roll the lamb back up, enclosing the mixture. Tie with string to keep the lamb rolled in shape. Rub the lamb all over with oil, sprinkle with salt and freshly ground black pepper and place in a baking tray.
Cook the lamb in the preheated oven for 30 minutes. Turn the meat over and cook for another 30 minutes. Turn the meat over again and cook for a further 20–30 minutes, or until the lamb is medium. To check if it is done, insert a small kitchen knife into the centre of the roast. Count to five. If the knife feels warm (tepid), the meat is rare. If it feels bearably hot, the meat is medium. If necessary, cook for a further 5 minutes and test again.
When the meat is ready, remove it from the oven and allow it to rest, covered, in a warm place. Carve the lamb.