Roast Lamb (or Mutton) Marinated in Red Wine and Juniper Berries

  • 1 leg of lamb (or mutton)

For the marinade:

  • 1 onion, chopped

  • 2 small carrots, chopped

  • 2 celery sticks, chopped

  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 2 sprigs thyme

  • 3 sprigs parsley

  • 2 sprigs rosemary

  • 10 juniper berries, crushed

  • 10 coriander seeds, crushed

  • 10 peppercorns, crushed

  • 2 teaspoons salt

  • 600ml (1 pt) red wine

  • 150ml (¼ pt) red or white wine vinegar

  • Oil

Main dish ingredients:

  • 2 onions, sliced

  • 2 carrots, diced

  • 4 celery sticks, chopped

  • 2 leeks, sliced

  • 225g (8oz) unsmoked streaky bacon, diced

  • 50g (2oz) butter

  • 600ml (1pt) good lamb or beef stock

  • 1 tablespoon redcurrant jelly

  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • Serve with roast potatoes and purple sprouting broccoli

To make the marinade: Brown the onion, carrots, celery and garlic in a little oil. Add the remaining marinade ingredients and bring to the boil. Set aside to cool. Prepare the lamb by scoring the fat into a diamond pattern, and placing joint in a deep dish. Pour over the cold marinade. Cover and leave to absorb all the flavours in the refrigerator, turning the lamb over twice a day for four days.

To cook the marinated lamb preheat the oven to 170°C (325°F/Gas 3). Lightly brown the vegetables and bacon in the butter using a deep roasting dish then lay the lamb on top. Strain the marinade over it and then add the stock and redcurrant jelly. Bring slowly to the boil, cover the dish and transfer to the oven for two hours or until the lamb is almost cooked. Turn the joint over after one hour. Take out the meat and turn up the oven to 220°C (425°F/Gas 7). Put the lamb on a roasting dish and put it back in the hot oven to glaze and give it colour (which can be done at the same time as roasting the potatoes). In the meantime, boil down the vegetable and pan juices left from the lamb, until reduced by about two-thirds and thickened. This will also make the sauce stronger in flavour. Taste and adjust seasoning. To serve: Once the lamb has had time to rest for 20 minutes or so, pour over a little of the sauce to give the lamb a glaze and arrange the lamb on top of the cooked vegetables and juices. Serve with potatoes roasted in beef dripping and seasonal purple sprouting broccoli.

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