GRILLED BUTTERFLIED LEG OF LAMB WITH HERB CRUST AND HOBBIT (WILD MUSHROOM) SAUCE (Scandinavian, for eight)
For the herb crust:
one 4-1/2 pound boneless leg of lamb, opened flat like a book, trimmed of fat and sinew (3-1/2 pounds after trimming)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
½ cup olive oil
5 tablespoons minced marjoram
5 tablespoons minced rosemary
5 tablespoons minced sage
5 tablespoons minced thyme
12 cloves garlic, mashed
For the hobbit sauce:
1 ounce package dried wild mushrooms (chanterelles, porcini, porto bellos)
2 cups boiling water
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
4 or more cups mixed fresh mushrooms (baby bella, shiitake, King Oscar) thickly sliced
2 teaspoons dried rosemary
1 ounce crumbled Danish blue cheese
1 cup half and half
salt and pepper to taste
rosemary for garnish
- Marinate the lamb: Place lamb in a large baking dish and season with salt and pepper. Stir oil, marjoram, rosemary, sage and garlic in a bowl. Rub paste all over the lamb and let sit for at least 30 minutes.
- Grill the lamb: Prepare barbecue (medium heat). Grill lamb with some of the marinade still clinging to the surface until lamb is cooked to desired doneness, 15 to 16 minutes per side for medium-rare (130*F). Transfer lamb to carving board and let rest 15 minutes.
- Make the hobbit sauce: Place dried mushrooms in a bowl, cover with boiling water and soak for at least 15 minutes (but up to 1 hour).
- Drain soaked wild mushrooms, reserving 1 cup of the liquid and chop them coarsely. Saute the fresh mushrooms in a frying pan in olive oil over medium-high heat until they begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium and whisk in the rosemary, crumbled blue cheese, half and half, the soaked mushrooms and ½ cup of the reserved soaking liquid. Heat until the sauce thickens, adding more soaking liquid if needed. Season with salt and pepper.
- Pour wild mushroom sauce over lamb, garnish with rosemary and serve.
NOTE: If it rains on your parade, broil the lamb under a pre-heated broiler about 4 inches from the flame for 12 to 14 minutes on each side for medium-rare meat. The lamb can also be roasted in the middle of a pre-heated 425* oven until the meat registers 130* on an instant-read thermometer, about 25 minutes.
HOBBIT (WILD MUSHOOM) SAUCE
adapted from Saveur Magazine, May 26, 2014