A wonderful combination of flavours, this is a great dish for early September when fresh walnuts and figs are in season.
Recipe created by Rosi Hanson.
Leg of Lamb Slow Cooked in Red Wine with Figs, Walnuts and Grapes
FOR 8 – 10 PEOPLE
• 1 onion
• 1 carrot
• olive oil
• 1 leg of lamb, about 2 kg (4 lb)
• fresh figs (white or black), about 1 per person
• white grapes, about 500 g (1 lb)
• fresh walnuts, about 500g (1 lb)
• a few juniper berries
• 2 glasses of red wine
• flour and water for a paste to seal the casserole (or use tinfoil/aluminium)
1. Preheat the oven to gas mark 4, 350°F, 180°C.
2. Peel and chop the onion and carrot. Heat a little oil in the casserole – choose one which is just big enough for the lamb and for the other ingredients to fit round it. Season the lamb with salt and brown in the oil with the onion and carrot. Turn from time to time so all sides are sealed in the heat – it will take about 20 minutes.
3. Wash the figs and grapes. Roughly chop the figs. De-pip the grapes, if you so wish. Crack the nut shells and remove the walnuts, peeling off as much of the bitter skins as possible. Chop them roughly. Add all to the casserole round the lamb. Add the juniper berries and the red wine.
4. When the wine comes to the simmer, put a layer of tin-foil/aluminium and the lid so it is well sealed.
5. Put the lamb into the preheated oven and leave for 2 ½ hours.
6. Let the lamb rest for 10-15 minutes in a warm place before carving it and arranging it with the fruit and nuts and its sauce of red wine and cooking juices in a deep serving dish.
Decanter recommends trying this with a big, robust red wine.
Chilean, South African and New Zealand Cabernet Sauvignons would also work well. Rioja Reservas could also do fantastically well but, as this is in the Rhône section of Rosi’s book, it has to be a Syrah or a Syrah/Grenache blend from Northern or Southern Rhône. Look out for St. Josesh, Crozes-Hermitage, Côte-Rôtie, Châteauneuf-du-Pape and Gigondas. – Harry Fawkes, Decanter.com
Translated by Sylvia Wu / 吴嘉溦
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