Across the globe, lamb is traditionally eaten at some point over Easter, more often than not on Easter Sunday.
Did you know?
In Greece, whole lambs are prepared and cooked over open fire pits but here in the UK, a lovely shoulder does for most families.
For me, the best lamb I have found comes from Greendale Farm Shop, on Sidmouth Road, near Farringdon. The sheep and lambs grow up grazing on the rich pasture of East Devon farmland, just a mile from the shop. They never leave the county. Happy lambs make tasty roasts.
There are a number of ways to compliment the flavour of the lamb whist it's cooking. I prefer using a chopped mix of rosemary, garlic, lemon mint, sea salt, pepper and a really good olive oil to coat my leg of lamb. I find the lemon mint just lifts the flavour from the slowly thawing winter into the promise of spring time. Spread it all over the scored skin of the lamb and let it permeate. (If you find it catching whilst cooking, grab a section of tin foil and simply rest it over the top until the joint has finished cooking).
One of the best tips I ever received whilst I was training was to rest roasted and baked meat for half the cooking time. (Cook for 2 hours, rest for an additional 1). This allows all the sinews that have become tight during the cooking process to relax, giving the meat a much smoother, succulent texture. This may sound like a very long time but trust me, it works. Take it out of the roasting tin, wrap it in tin foil with a little breathing hole to let the condensation out, and let it rest. This also has the added advantage of giving you the whole oven back to roast your potatoes and any other veg you are preparing, which out disturbing the joint. You don't have to re-heat the meat. The heat from the bones and the tin foil keep it hot.
Spring Menu Idea
I'm often asked to cook a spring menu so below is a sample of the sort of thing I provide for an Easter Sunday roast.