Recipe by Amethyst Ganaway
"Growing up, lamb was a staple food of my diet that I didn't realize so many people had an aversion to until my adulthood. Going to the mosque in Moncks Corner, South Carolina, I was deeply immersed in a multicultural community, and just like so many other parts of my life, food was a major part of celebrating and practicing faith. But there was something unique about my experience with lamb in a sufi community.
Every Ramadan, the men would butcher a few goats and lambs and even though as a young woman I wasn't allowed to be a part of the process, I always found myself sneaking to watch them. After the meat was butchered, it was passed out throughout the women in the community to cook for the big Eid celebration. This is where I would learn to love lamb and goat, especially when it was covered in curry."
Experience the marriage of fragrant curry powder, kosher salt, and pepper creates a robust, aromatic marinade that infuses every fiber of the succulent leg of lamb. A promising a symphony of tastes. The slow-cooking process in the oven allows the lamb to reach a state of unparalleled tenderness, breaking down into juicy, flavorful bites that practically melt in your mouth.
This recipe needs a little planning and prep time. To marinate the leg of lamb, you will need at least overnight or two days in the refrigerator.
total time:24+ hours to marinate + 3-4 hours to cook
- 2 small bowls
- Oven-safe cast iron dutch oven
- or deep pan
Place the leg of lamb in a small bowl and set aside.
In another small bowl, mix 1 tablespoon of oil, the curry powder, salt, and pepper until smooth.
Take the leg of lamb, and carefully using a paring knife, poke deel holes into the flesh all around the leg. Then, insert the smashed garlic cloves into the slits.
Next, rub the oil and spice mixture all over the leg of lamb, making sure to cover it fully.
Place the leg of lamb back into the bowl and wrap it with plastic wrap or into an airtight container to marinate overnight or for two days in the refrigerator.
After marinating, remove the leg of lamb from the refrigerator to come to room temperature while the oven preheats at 350F.
In an oven-safe cast iron, dutch oven, or deep pan with the stove turned to medium-high, add the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil.
When the oil has warmed up (about 2-3 minutes), add the leg of lamb and sear on all sides (including the ends).
When the lamb is seared, remove it from the pan momentarily, and add the onion, carrot, and celery to the pan. Saute over medium heat for 3-5 minutes or just until the vegetables begin to soften, stirring often.
Add the lamb back in on top of the vegetables and pour in the water or stock. Bring up to a boil for 2-3 minutes before covering the pan with a lid and placing into the oven.
Let the lamb cook for 3-4 hours or until tender. Remove the lamb from the oven, and remove the strings (truss) before cutting and serving.
This recipe can be adapted for a bone-in leg of lamb but the cooking time may vary.