Grilled Leg of Lamb with Cranberry Salsa Verde

Chef Michael Schwartz, chef/owner of Michaels Genuine, Harry’s Pizza and The Genuine Kitchen, uses Niman Ranch meat on the menus of his restaurants  in Miami and the Cayman Islands. In 2011 he honored our farmers by cooking at the Niman Ranch 14th Annual Hog Farmer Appreciation dinner.

He recently published Michael’s Genuine Food Down-To-Earth Cooking for People Who Love to Eat, in which he shares recipes for dishes you know and love from Caramelized Onion Dip with Thick Cut Potato Chips to Crispy Sweet & Spicy Pork Belly with Kimchi and crushed peanuts. Find a delicious recipe for leg of lamb perfect for your holiday celebrations.

Grilled Leg of Lamb with Cranberry Salsa Verde

Serves 6 to 8

1 (6-pound) leg of lamb, bone in, trimmed of excess fat
1/2 cup Greek-style yogurt
6 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
Juice of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
3 lemons, halved
Salsa Verde (recipe follows)

Put the lamb in a large roasting pan and pat dry with paper towels.

In a small bowl, combine the yogurt, garlic, rosemary, lemon juice, oil, salt, and pepper. Mix well to combine. Using your hands, rub the paste all over the lamb. Cover with plastic wrap and marinade in the refrigerator for at least 6 or even better overnight, turning occasionally.

Preheat an outdoor gas grill and get it very hot. Rub the grill grates with oil to prevent sticking. Put the leg of lamb on the grill, reduce the heat to the lowest setting, and close the cover. Grill the lamb for 75 minutes, turning periodically, or until a meat thermometer inserted into the center of the lamb registers about 135F (be careful that the thermometer does not touch the bone.) Remove the lamb to a cutting board and allow to rest for 10 minutes before carving. The internal temperature will continue to rise 5 to 10 degrees. Right before serving, put the lemon halves, cut-side down, on the grill and char for 1 minute – you won’t believe how much juice you get.

To serve: Drizzle the lamb with salsa verde and give a good squeeze of lemon juice.

Rainy-day method: Prepare the lamb as above, but roast in a roasting pan in a preheated 325F oven for 1 1/2 to 2 hours for medium-rare.

Salsa Verde

Makes 3/4 cup

1 cup firmly packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped

3 tablespoons capers, drained, rinsed, and chopped

2 anchovies in oil, drained and finely chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 shallot, chopped

Finely grated zest of 1 lemon

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Pinch of red pepper flakes

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

In a small bowl, combine all the ingredients, mixing well with a spoon.


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