Spice up your Christmas spread with this boldly flavoured and refreshing take on a traditional roast lamb from MasterChef winner Sashi Cheliah.
Sashi Cheliah brings the spice.
I CAN’T IMAGINE a celebration without spices, and Christmas is my favourite end-ofyear celebration. I want you to enjoy this festive season as much as me, so I’ve created an amazing Indian-inspired roast lamb with roast vegetables and a beautiful yoghurt and mint dressing. I love strong flavours, so I’ve given this Christmas classic an Indian twist. It’s robust in flavour and the spices really elevate the dish.
This recipe is great for a family or to serve at a dinner party of 4-6 people. The only catch is that you’ll need to prepare the lamb the night before and make sure you have all the spices at home.
The lamb is marinated in a medley of spices with a yoghurt base. This tenderises the meat so it retains more moisture while cooking. When you take the gorgeous piece of lamb from the fridge, be sure to score it so it absorbs the marinade.
Cooking the lamb slowly makes it tender and allows time for the bold spices to impart their flavours into the meat. Roasting makes the flavours more intense and guarantees tenderness. The combination of mint and yoghurt creates a refreshing contrast to the lamb, and the roasted vegetables are drizzled with the drippings from the lamb.
Do try this dish, enjoy the festive season and haul out a bottle of wine as well!
SPICED ROAST LAMB LEG SERVES 4-6
Begin this recipe at least 4 hours ahead. You will need a meat thermometer.
2.9kg lamb leg (bone in)
1/4 cup (60ml) extra virgin olive oil 500g baby potatoes, halved 2 bunches heirloom baby carrots
(substitute Dutch baby carrots) 600g Jap pumpkin, cut into 3cm wedges 1 red onion, cut into wedges 4 garlic cloves, unpeeled 8 thyme sprigs, leaves picked 1 cup (280g) Greek yoghurt 1/ 2 bunch mint, leaves picked, finely chopped, plus extra leaves to serve 1 tsp ground cumin
INDIAN SPICE MARINADE
4 garlic cloves, crushed 5cm piece (25g) ginger, finely grated 1 tbs garam masala (Indian spice mix) 2 tbs ground coriander 2 tsp each ground cumin, ground turmeric
and ground chilli powder 1 bunch mint, leaves and stems finely
chopped, plus extra leaves to serve 1 cup (280g) Greek yoghurt 11/ 2 tbs extra virgin olive oil
For the marinade, combine all ingredients and 1/ 2 tsp salt flakes in a bowl.
Score lamb at 3cm intervals and rub all over with marinade. Cover and chill for 2 hours to overnight. Stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before roasting.
Preheat oven to 200°C. Grease 3 baking trays and line with baking paper. Place lamb on 1 prepared tray, drizzle with 1 tbs oil and roast for 15 minutes. Reduce oven to 180°C. Roast lamb for a further 1 hour 5 minutes, or until internal temperature at the thickest part is 54°C on thermometer. Rest for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, 30 minutes into lamb cooking time, combine potato, carrot, pumpkin, onion, garlic, thyme and remaining 2 tbs oil in a bowl. Spread across prepared trays and roast for 1 hour 5 minutes or until tender.
To make the dressing, combine yoghurt, mint, cumin and 1/ 2 tsp salt flakes in a bowl.
Place lamb and vegetables on a serving platter, scatter with extra mint and drizzle with some yoghurt and mint dressing.