Cooking On A Budget: Grilled Lamb with Rosemary, Garlic Paste

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Grilled Lamb with Rosemary, Garlic Paste


It was quite a few years ago now that my daughter and I tried two different recipes for lamb. Lamb is not often purchased in our house for its' high price per pound. Out of the two recipes this is the one we all agreed came out best. It's to die for flavorful and cooks so well on the grill. For the first time in my life I ate lamb about medium rare. Back in the day our parents cooked the daylights out of it - the roast always looked gray. I love lamb this way and would love to eat it more often if it were not so expensive.
But every once in a while, go just a wee bit off budget if you can and enjoy this special recipe.
And speaking of price, this small 2.18 pound boneless leg of lamb was on special and cost $15.24. I added up the cost of the lamb, rice and vegetables and it came to $21.06, feeding 6 people at $3.51 each. When I compared the  prices for pork roast and beef roast this was a good deal and something we have once in a blue moon.

The photo above is the lamb in the marinade.
  • 1 boneless leg of lamb (about 2 lbs.)
  • 1/4 cup fresh rosemary - chopped*
  • 8 cloves garlic - peeled
  • 2 tbsp. lemon juice (fresh preferably)
  • 2 tbsp. paprika
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 - 3 tbsp. olive oil
  1. In a food processor place all of the ingredients and puree until smooth. Use the 2 tbsp. olive oil to start then add a 3rd tablespoon if necessary.
  2. Rub the paste all over the boneless leg of lamb and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour up to 24 hours.
  3. Remove the lamb from the refrigerator at least 30 minutes prior to grilling.
  4. Grill all sides over medium high heat for about 7 minutes per side to sear the meat.
  5. Continue cooking for another 30 minutes on the cooler side of the grill and with an instant read thermometer check the temperature in the thickest part of the meat. Grill for another 20 minutes or longer for the doneness you desire. The cooking temperature below will help guide you.
* If you do not chop the rosemary first, the processor does not break it down well - lesson learned.

Cooking Temperatures for Lamb:

Rare: 120-130 °F (48-54 °C) Internal appearance very red; very moist with warm juices. Approximate cooking and resting time: 20-25 min./lb. plus 8-10 min. resting.

Medium-rare: 130-140 °F (54-60 °C) Internal appearance lighter red; very moist with warm juices. Approximate cooking and resting time: 25-30 min./lb.. plus 8-10 min. resting.

Medium (with a touch of pink): 140-150 °F (60-66 °C) Internal appearance pink red color; moist with clear pink juice. Approximate cooking and resting time: 30-35 min./lb. plus 8-10 min. resting.

Well-done: 150-165 °F (66-74 °C) Internal appearance no pink or red, slightly moist with clear juices.

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