Mortimer Brewster said “Insanity runs in my family; it practically gallops!” (Watch Arsenic and Old Lace; Cary Grant’s hilarious.) That’s kind of how I feel about the poor sucker who volunteers to cook holiday meals. The role of Poor Sucker this Easter was played by Kristin, proprietress of The Yellow House on the Corner.
Dinner was supposed to be ready for 3, but naturally wasn’t because even though the recipe for the lamb told me 12 minutes per pound for rare (140 degrees), it really wasn’t. We had a four pound boneless leg of lamb. It went into the oven at 2 and came out at 3:40. And trust me when I tell you, it was not overcooked at all. It was medium rare and it was delicious.
Along with the lamb, I made a recipe for Mashed Potatoes Au Gratin from Everyday Food. That was an easy, quick and unhealthy recipe that was very good. Changes for next time – 1 cup of breadcrumbs instead of 2, more salt, and more parmesan cheese.
I also did roasted asparagus and steamed artichokes. Artichokes were easy: lemon flavored water boils, steam in a covered basket for 25-35 minutes until outer leaves are tender. Serve with olive oil and lemon juice. Asparagus roasts in a 350 oven for 25 minutes with a sprinkle of olive oil, salt and pepper. Squeeze lemon juice over the spears when they come out of the oven.
Mom made cherry pie and cheesecake from scratch. Dad brought the booze. It was, all in all, a pretty perfect Sunday.
Roasted Leg of Lamb
- 1-2 tbsp olive oil
- 1-2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1 tsp lemon zest
- 4-7 cloves of garlic, separated
- 1 tsp powdered ginger
- 2 tsp fresh marjoram, chopped
- 2 tsp fresh thyme leaves, chopped
- 2 tsp fresh sage, chopped
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp fresh cracked pepper
- 3-4 lbs boneless leg of lamb
Preheat oven to 325. Remove meat from fridge about an hour or so before cooking so that the meat has a chance to come to room temperature.
In a small bowl, combine chopped herbs, 1-3 cloves of grated garlic, lemon zest, salt & pepper, and lemon juice and olive oil. Whisk together and set aside.
Cut several small slits in the lamb by poking the tip of you knife into the meat. Use the remaining garlic cloves, cut into slivers or halved depending on the size of the cloves, and push into the slits you made.
Place lamb in a roasting pan with a rack. Rub marinade into the meat and pour any remaining liquid over the lamb (I removed the bay leaf before I rubbed on the marinade).
Roast in oven to an internal temperature of 140 degrees for rare. Remove from oven and let rest 10-15 minutes before carving.
Mashed Potatoes Au Gratin
- 3.5 lbs yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
- 8 tbsp (1 stick) unsalted better, divided
- 1/2 cup half and half
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1 tbsp dijon mustard
- 2 cups bread crumbs (the recipe stated fresh, but I used store bought, which may be why 2 cups seemed excessive)
Preheat oven to 350.
Boil potatoes in salted water until tender. Remove from heat, drain, and mash.
Add 6 tablespoons of butter (3/4 stick) to the potatoes and stir until the butter melts. Add in sour cream and half and half, stirring until creamy.
Spread potatoes in a shallow baking dish.
Melt remaining 2 tbsp butter and mix together with dijon mustard. Stir into the breadcrumbs. Spread breadcrumb mixture over the potatoes. (I sprinkled the top with a little parmesan cheese as well) Bake in oven for 20 minutes.