GREEK STYLE CROWN ROAST OF LAMB (for six to eight)
3 racks of lamb, 8 ribs each, fully trimmed and Frenched, tied into a crown (have the butcher do this for you)
salt and pepper to taste
1 to 2 tablespoons dried oregano
For the marinade:
½ cup olive oil
¼ cup red wine vinegar
8 cloves of garlic, grated
1 tablespoon dried oregano
2 teaspoons salt
black pepper to taste
For the sauce:
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon Greek honey
½ cup olive oil
a pinch of salt
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
Greek patates sto fournia (roasted potato spears with lemon and oregano),
1. Preheat the oven to 425* with rack in the middle position.
2. Marinate the lamb: Combine the marinade ingredients in a bowl and whisk together until combined. Place the lamb racks in a baking dish, pour the marinade over the racks, and rub it into the lamb until it is entirely coated on both sides. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 2 days.
3. Prepare the lamb for roasting: Allow the meat to come to room temperature before roasting. Season on both sides with salt, pepper and oregano. Using kitchen twine, tie two end bones together, creating one long continuous rack. With the meaty sides of the racks inside, bend the racks into a circular crown shape with the end bones curving out. Tie the bones on the other ends of the rack together with twine to stabilize the circle, then cut more twine to tie the bottom of the crown in place at the base and again part way up the side. Place the crown in a bundt pan to help it keep its shape while roasting.
4. Roast the lamb: Roast for 25 to 30 minutes, or until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the meat (not touching a bone) registers 130*, for medium rare. As soon as the lamb comes out of the oven, tent it with foil and allow it to rest for 15 to 20 minutes to reabsorb its juices.
5. Make the sauce while the lamb rests: Place all of the ingredients except for the pan juices in a bowl and whisk until well combined. Add the pan juices after the meat has rested, and whisk well to incorporate. Pour into a gravy boat and serve alongside the lamb.
6. Serve the lamb: If you are serving orzo, make a bed on a platter, place the roast atop, and fill the cavity with more orzo. Mashed potatoes also can be served piled into the cavity. Roasted potatoes are usually served surrounding the roast on the platter.
adapted from Dimitra’s Dishes