Roast Saddle of Lamb with Herb Butter

Tender, juicy and full of flavour...

Tender, juicy and full of flavour…

This is a great recipe.  It is simple yet full of flavour and a fantastic roast option for a weeknight dinner party or any day when you don’t have a lot of time.

I had a chat to my butcher about the ‘saddle’ of lamb.  It is basically a double loin roast, deboned but with the skin left in tact so that you can ‘roll’ the loin and stuff with a filling as desired.  It is one of the more expensive cuts, but tender and full of flavour.  The full saddle will probably cost you in the vicinity of $30 however if you only have a few people to serve (about 2-4), you could just opt for a single rolled loin for the around $15 mark.  So, while it is more expensive per kilo than a leg or shoulder roast, you are buying less ‘weight’ and getting a higher ratio of meat to fat etc, so there is less wastage.  Besides, it looks much more elegant and tastes divine.

So, as it was just me and my husband tonight, I opted for the single loin roast.  I also omitted the capsicums (peppers) that Gabriel Gaté suggests as a side dish here and replaced with garlic roast potatoes.  I still made the full recipe for the stuffing … you can never have too much of a good stuffing!

Ingredients

  • 1.2 kg (2 lb 8 oz) deboned saddle of lamb
  • 2 tbsp chopped parsley
  • 2 tbsp chopped tarragon
  • 1 tbsp chopped thyme
  • salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 50 g (2 oz) softened butter
  • 3 tbsp fine breadcrumbs
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 different-coloured capsicums, cut into bite-size pieces, or whole baby capsicums (or replace with peeled potatoes cut into halves)
  • 6 garlic cloves, with the skin
  • a little extra olive oil for drizzling

How to do it

makings of a tasty herb butter...

makings of a tasty herb butter…

Preheat the your oven to 180 degrees celsius and then it is back to the chopping!  Chop up your herbs and add them to the soften butter with some salt and pepper and the breadcrumbs.  Mix this together thoroughly and set aside while you prepare your lamb.

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Stuff the loin, roll it and tie it up tight...

Stuff the loin, roll it and tie it up tight…

Now, take your lamb loin and open it up to reveal the skin flap that wraps around the roll.  Depending on how it has been butchered it should just be a layer of mostly skin and fat, however you may have a layer of meat attached to it.  If you can see the skin and fat, just take a knife and scrap back some of the fat from the skin.  If you have meat on both sides of the opened loin, just trim off whatever excess fat you can see.  Now you can place the herb butter along the length of the meat.  Pat it down and reroll the loin (enclosing the herb butter) and tie tightly at 2cm intervals with butchers twine.………………………………………………………………………………………………

Reasy to roast (note: I forgot to brown my roast before placing it in the oven - I did not notice any impact on the end result though!)

Ready to roast (note: I forgot to brown my roast before placing it in the oven – I did not notice any impact on the end result though!)

Heat a little oil in a pan and briefly brown the roast on all sides, before placing the rolled and tied loin into an oiled roasting tray.  Add the potatoes and garlic (or capsicums and garlic depending on your preference) and place the whole lot in the oven for 40 minutes or so or until the roast is done to your liking.  If you are roasting potatoes you may like to increase the heat to 200 degrees celsius during the last 10 minutes of cooking to help with crisping them up.  When the roast is done, turn the oven off and leave it to rest for 15 minutes or so in the warmth of the oven.

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Tender, juicy and full of flavour...

Tender, juicy and full of flavour…

To serve, cut into thick slices and drizzle lightly with olive oil and surround with crispy potatoes (or capsicum medley!)

Enjoy!

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