Easter lamb is a traditional recipe, which we always love very much! This year I would like to present you a variation of stuffed lamb, this one is slow roasted and filled with the traditional feta with the addition of dried tomatoes and CARDMOM! Thanks the special addition of this secret ingredient and the recipe becomes a wonderful taste and thanks the excellent sauce it is elevated to a gift from the gods and a real perfect Easter recipe.
According the cooking direction of this recipe, you will get a melt in the mouth well done stuffed lamb. Well done lamb it’s way we always pieces of lamb on Crete and I really appreciate this cooking way. If you prefer medium-rare lamb, you may simply roast at higher temperature (220°C) for the first 30 minutes and then reduce the temperature to 180°C; it’s done when the instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of the meat reads 60 C.
- 8-10 kitchen twines of the length of about 50 cm
- 1 boneless leg of lamb of about 1500 g
- 10-15 preserved wine leaves
- Olive oil
- 3 small onions, peeled sliced
- 1500 g small potatoes, peeled (if they are big simply quartered)
- 2-4 cardamom pods, lightly crushed (to taste)
- 1 cup white wine
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 15 dried tomatoes
- 1/2 cup boiling water
- 30 raisins
- 1 pinch cardamom
- 200 g feta, crumbled
- 1/2 lemon zest
- Salt and pepper, if needed
- Filling: In a small bowl, cover dried tomatoes with 1/4 cup boiling water; let soak for 5 minutes. Drain, but reserve the water. Add all the other ingredients and adjust with salt and pepper. I did not need salt as the feta and dried tomatoes where dry enough.
- On your working surface, place the twines at a distance of about 3 cm between each (in the direction of the long side of the meat, see picture).
- Over the twine adjust the wine leaves in the same size as the meat.
- Wash and pat dry the meat and trim any excess fat. If some parts are much thicker than others are, butterfly them to make it evenly thick. Lightly pound the lamb with a meat mallet, if necessary, to further even it out and make it roughly rectangular in shape
- Lay the mean skin side down over the leaves and spread the filling over the lamb. Starting at one short end, roll the lamb up tightly together with the leaves. For this step, it is easier if you get the help of a second person! Tie the roll. Brush with olive oil.
- Cover the lamb well with foil and refrigerate for at least 8 and up to 24 hours. Let the lamb sit at room temperature for about 1 hour before cooking.
- Preheat the oven to 170°C. For this recipe is better not to use the air forced function!
- Sauté the onions in a non-sticky skillet with about 2 tablespoons of olive oil and when lightly browned and set aside. Add one more tablespoon of olive oil to the skillet and toss the potatoes in it.
- Place the lamb in the mold arrange onions around the lamb, add the cardamom pods (one on each side) and arrange the potatoes around the meat (if possible in one layer).
- Add the reserved liquid of the dried tomatoes and half of the wine.
- Add some salt, pepper to taste, and drizzle 2 tablespoon of oil over all of them.
- Cover with the lid and bake for 2 hours at 180°C. If your baking dish does not have a lid cover with parchment paper then with aluminum foil; in this case take care that you add more liquid or you check from time to time that the meat will not dry out (this depends also form the kind of oven!)
- After two hours remove the lid, add the remaining wine, check if you need to add more salt and increase the temperature to 210°C, bake for 30 minutes. From time to time, check that you still have enough liquid (I recommend to have a level of at least 1.5 cm liquid on the bottom of your mold).
- Remove from the oven and allow to rest at least 20 minutes before removing the twine and slicing.