Countdown to Christmas Menu – Fruity Leg of Lamb

One week has passed since I posted my last Countdown to Christmas Festive Roulade and now time is running out if you have not booked or ordered your favorite Christmas Roast.Although many families opt for the traditional roast turkey, my family has never liked that idea. We have just about every other roast meat on the table, so no one is missing the turkey!We go from game, pork, beef and yes, my favorite…lamb! I love it how my mom always says: “let’s just make a leg of lamb for Justin….Just-in-case someone does not like beef or pork!
If however you eat leg of lamb on a regular Sundays, at Christmas time you have to pimp it a bit, you know, add something special, a little Christmas cheer. So, being in the spirit of Christmas and the excitement of opening a present and finding something special inside, made me think of this recipe. It is hardly a recipe, because it is so simple and to take the guess work out of the way, I have even included a video for you.

The secret here is to find really good lamb, I have written about this before, but find a good source for your meat. Nowadays everybody advertises Karoo Lamb (which is an part of South Africa know for sheep farming), but sadly this says nothing about the source and how the lamb was raised etc. As around or check you local newspaper for reliable suppliers of quality lamb, it is so worth it.
If you are adventurous enough to de-bone you own leg of lamb, be my guest, life is too short for that and if you bribe your butcher with a tin of Christmas cookies, he will do gladly do it for you. Once the de-boning is done, stuffing the meat is a breeze and all that is left for you to do is to chillax, take the load off…..while the oven roasts your lamb to perfection!


You can stuff the lamb with any flavor combination really, here are a few ideas.
– sun-dried tomatoes, feta and rosemary
– pear and Gorgonzola
– olives, garlic, bread and herbs
– apricot and walnuts
– basil and roasted garlic

I wanted to use something that was fruity because somehow I associate Christmas with preserved fruits like ginger, citrus peel, raisins, cherries and figs. Maybe it has something to do with the tradition of eating fruit cake at this time, I am not sure what my motives were, but when I saw this bottle of fig preserve, it was a done deal. I present you with…..

Leg of Lamb stuffed with Figs and Feta.
serves 6 – with leftovers for sandwiches

Ingredients 
1 x 2kg leg of lamb – de-boned
4-5 preserved figs – drained
1 cup crumbed feta
sea salt and black pepper
butchers netting or butchers twine

Pre-heat oven to 180C.When you receive your lamb from the butcher, take a damp cloth or kitchen toweling and just wipe the meat to remove all bloodiness. There will be a long cut on the one side of the lamb where the butcher removed the bone, open the meat at the cut and season with salt and pepper. Now place the crumbed feta on the meat and place the figs on the feta in a line. Roll and close the meat and fasten with the butchers twine of use the butcher’s netting to hold the meat together and the stuffing in. Place in a casserole and without  covering the meat, roast in a pre-heated oven for about 2 hours or until the juice runs clear when a test pen is inserted. Rest the meat for at least 10-12 minutes. Carve and serve with roast potatoes, young green beans or whatever trimmings you like.

Cook’s Notes
– Normally I prefer my lamb to be a little pink, but with the fig and the feta stuffing I did not think pink was an option.
– I think roasted pine nuts will be really awesome with the figs and feta, but sadly I had none left so just used what  I had available!

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