Roast Leg of Lamb with Herbes de Provence and Potatoes

Roast Leg of Lamb with Potatoes

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Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 140 minutes
Servings: 8

Coated with an herb paste and roasted on the bone, this leg of lamb emerges exceptionally flavorful and is large enough feed a crowd. The juices from the lamb flavor the potatoes, which stay moist beneath the lamb but form a crisp crust elsewhere.


  • 1/2 cup (3/4 oz./20 g) chopped mixed fresh herbs, such as rosemary, thyme and oregano
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tsp. grated lemon zest
  • 7 Tbs. (3 fl. oz./80 ml) olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 lb. (1 kg) fingerling potatoes, halved lengthwise
  • 8 shallots, halved lengthwise (quartered if large)
  • 1 bone-in leg of lamb, about 7 lb. (3.5 kg), trimmed of excess fat and tied with kitchen twine
  • 2 lemons, halved
  • 5 fresh rosemary sprigs
  • 1/4 cup (2 fl. oz./60 ml) Madeira
  • 2 cups (16 fl. oz./500 ml) beef stock


Position a rack in the lower third of an oven and preheat to 450°F (220°C).

In a small bowl, combine the mixed herbs, garlic, lemon zest, 3 Tbs. of the olive oil, 1 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper. Spread the herb mixture evenly over the leg of lamb.

In a large bowl, combine the potatoes and shallots. Drizzle with 2 Tbs. of the olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and toss to coat the vegetables. Set aside.

In a large roasting pan over medium-high heat, warm the remaining 2 Tbs. olive oil. Add the lamb and sear, turning occasionally, until browned all over, about 3 minutes per side.

Carefully transfer the lamb, fat side up, to a roasting rack, and place the rack in the roasting pan. Scatter the potatoes and shallots, lemon halves and rosemary sprigs around and under the lamb. Roast for 30 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 350°F (180°C). Roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the meat, away from the bone, registers 130°F for medium-rare, 1 to 1 1/2 hours more. Transfer the lamb to a carving board, cover loosely with aluminum foil and let rest for 15 minutes.

Using a slotted spoon, remove the potatoes, shallots and lemon halves from the pan and transfer to a serving bowl. Cover with aluminum foil to keep warm and set aside. Discard the rosemary sprigs.

Using a spoon, skim the fat from the pan. Set the pan over medium heat, add the Madeira and deglaze the pan, stirring to scrape up any browned bits from the pan bottom. Add the stock and stir to combine. Strain the liquid into a saucepan, set over medium heat and cook until thickened, 5 to 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Carve the lamb into thin slices and arrange on a warmed platter with the potatoes, shallots and lemon halves. Serve immediately, passing the sauce alongside. Serves 8.

Williams Sonoma Test Kitchen

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