This roast leg of lamb with harissa and shallots is super flavorful thanks to the harissa. Perfect for a special occasion!
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I’ve posted several roast legs of lamb recipes, but this time I’ve flavored it with harissa paste and warm Mediterranean and Middle Eastern spices. This roast leg of lamb with harissa and shallots recipe roasts low and slow. So, the only thing you have to do is season it well, put it in the oven, and forget about it.
If you have company coming for dinner, it leaves you a lot of time to prepare side dishes or get your house in order.
Best way to marinate roast leg of lamb?
Always use a bone-in leg of lamb and trim some of the excess fat. Take a knife and cut slits into the leg so the marinade can get into the meat. If you want to add even more flavor, you can insert whole garlic cloves into the slits.
However, for this recipe, most of the flavor comes from the harissa paste. My favorite store-bought brand is Mina. It’s usually sold in the International section of the supermarket, and they have two varieties. I prefer the Mina Harissa Mild because it has just the right amount of spice for me and has a ton of roasted red pepper flavor. They have a spicer one if you like more heat.
If you can’t find it at the supermarket, make your own at home. It’s pretty easy, and you can get my recipe here.
Why will your guests love Roast Leg of Lamb with Harissa and Shallots?
- Fall apart tender lamb
- Warm, sweet, and spicy roasted red pepper flavor
- Sweet roasted shallots
- They’ll think you spent all day in the kitchen for them!
What makes this leg of lamb so flavorful?
- Leg of lamb –bone-in and about 7-8 pounds
- Whole Garlic cloves, peeled
- Shallots, peeled
- Salt –about half a teaspoon per pound of meat
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Dried thyme –oregano or rosemary would be good too
- Balsamic vinegar –adds a little sweetness and smokiness
- Mild harissa sauce –or the spicier version for more heat
- Ground cumin
- Ground coriander
How to make a Roast Leg of Lamb with Harissa & Shallots?
- Preheat the oven to 350 °F, 180 °C.
- Cut several slits in the lamb so that the marinade flavors the meat well.
- Place the lamb and garlic cloves in a roasting pan.
- Season it with salt, pepper, thyme, cumin, and coriander. If you want to marinate it overnight, cover it and place it in the refrigerator. Allow the meat to come to room temperature before proceeding.
- Pour the harissa and balsamic vinegar over the lamb and rub the marinade on both sides of the lamb.
- Add the shallots whole to the pan along with about a half cup of water.
- Cover the meat with a large piece of parchment paper. Crumbling the parchment first helps it stay in place. Cover the pan with foil and bake until the meat is soft and falling off the bone. About 4-5 hours.
- Uncover and broil for a few minutes until the meat is golden.
Serving to your family and friends…
I don’t add a drop of oil to the lamb, but lamb is pretty fatty, so it releases a lot of oil. Skim some of the oil off, but leave a little because it adds to the delicious flavor of the dish. I like to serve leg of lamb with harissa and shallots with roasted lemony potatoes, a cumin rice pilaf, and tzatziki.
Your family and guests will feel the love!
- 1 leg of lamb, bone-in, about 7-8 pounds
- 15 garlic cloves, peeled
- 12 shallots, peeled
- about a half teaspoon of salt per pound of meat
- freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 1 tablespoon of dried thyme. oregano, or rosemary
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 10-14 ounces mild harissa sauce
- 2 heaping teaspoons ground cumin
- 2 heaping teaspoons ground coriander
Preheat the oven to 350 °F, 180 °C.
Cut several slits in the lamb so that the marinade flavors the meat well.
Place the lamb and garlic cloves in a roasting pan.
Season it with salt, pepper, thyme, cumin, and coriander. Pour the harissa and the balsamic vinegar over the lamb and rub the marinade on both sides of the lamb.
Add the shallots to the pan along with about a half cup of water.
Cover the meat with a large puece of parchment paper. Crumbling the parchment first, helps it stay in place. Cover the pan with foil and bake until the meat is soft and flaling off the bone. About 4-5 hours.
Uncover and broil for a few minutes until the meat is golden.
Serve with roasted lemony potatoes, rice pilaf, and tzatziki.
Marinade the lamb overnight and refrigerate it for maximum flavor. Allow the meat to come to room temperature before roasting.
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