Recipe: Ruth Pretty’s Lamb with Lemon & Oregano, Hummus & Lamb Jus

Make merry with this chill-beating med-inspired feast to warm a cold night.

Recipes: Ruth Pretty  Styling & photos: Carolyn Robertson

Serves – 6


2.5kg–3kg leg of lamb
5–7 cloves garlic, slivered
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1½ teaspoons flaky sea salt
¾ teaspoon freshly ground
black pepper
1 sheet brown paper (75cm x 75cm)
3 sheets baking paper (each 75cm x 50cm)
10–12 fresh oregano sprigs
2 x 1m lengths cooking twine
Hummus (recipe follows)


Heat oven to 170°C. Make small cuts in the lamb with a sharp paring knife and push in slivers of garlic. Mix the oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper.

Lay the brown paper down and overlap the baking paper on top. Place the lamb on top, skin-side up. Rub the lemon mixture all over the lamb and arrange the oregano under and over it. Wrap the lamb loosely in the baking paper, then wrap the brown paper over it and tie securely with the cooking twine.

Set a roasting rack into a large oven tray and put the lamb on top, skin side up. Cook for three hours. Remove from the oven and rest away from the heat on the roasting rack for 20 to 30 minutes.

Make a small cut in a corner of the package and pour the juices into the tray. To remove fat, place in freezer for 5 to 10 minutes or until the fat sets on top of the juices. Lift off the fat and reheat the juices until hot.

To serve, transfer the package to a serving platter and open the paper. Carve the lamb at the table and serve with jus and hummus.

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Put 400g can chickpeas, drained (reserve the brine), ¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, 2 tablespoons tahini, 3 small garlic cloves that have been finely chopped, ½ teaspoon flaky sea salt, and 2 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil into a food processor and process until smooth-ish.

Add ¼ cup of the reserved chickpea brine and whiz again (add more if extremely soft hummus is desired). Cover and store in the fridge for up to 5 days. Drizzle with additional extra virgin olive oil before serving.

NZ Life and Leisure This article first appeared in NZ Life & Leisure Magazine.
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