Prep 30 mins
Cook 7 hrs
A classic French Bistro recipe, and one that is SO easy to cook; the lamb in this recipe is cooked after 5 or 6 hours, but 7 hours is the traditional French timing for 'gigot a la cuillère' - a joint that can be carved with a spoon, hence its name! You will need a very large ovenproof casserole with a lid or a large, deep roasting tin, which you can cover tightly with tin foil - or, this can be cooked with GREAT success in the crock-pot. This lamb is just divine when served alongside gratin Dauphinoise and steamed haricots verts. I add lots of garlic for quite a pungent flavour - adjust the garlic and seasonings to personal taste.
- 1 (3 kg) leg of lamb
- 4 onions, peeled and sliced
- 8 -12 garlic cloves, peeled and left whole
- 4 large carrots, peeled and quartered lengthways
- 300 ml white wine
- 300 ml stock
- 2 tablespoons armagnac or 2 tablespoons madeira wine
- salt and pepper
- 3 sprigs fresh thyme
- TRADITIONAL OVEN METHOD.
- Preheat the oven to 120 degrees C or 248 F, gas mark 1/2. Season the leg of lamb with salt and pepper to taste.
- Put the casserole or roasting tin on the hob and brown the lamb thoroughly on all sides (it is important to do this now as the meat will not brown in the oven). If the lamb sticks add a little oil to the casserole. Use the cooker extractor fan to disperse any smoke. Drain away any fat that has gathered in the bottom of the pan.
- Add the vegetables to the casserole along with the white wine and stock. Season and bring to the boil.
- Put on the lid or cover tightly with tin foil and place in the pre heated oven. Bake for 7 hours, turning twice during this time. The meat will be cooked after 5 hours and offer no resistance to the knife.
- The meat requires no resting time when cooked in this way. Transfer the meat and vegetables to a serving platter. Strain the meat juices into a jug and pour or blot away the fat with kitchen paper. Pour the juices into a pan and boil vigorously until reduced by a quarter.
- Adjust the seasoning and add the Armagnac or Madeira. Garnish the lamb with the sprigs of thyme and serve with the sauce. Use a spoon to carve and serve the lamb - a la cuillere as the French call it. It will be tender, succulent and delicious !
- CROCK-POT COOKING METHOD.
- Carry out steps 3 and 4 as shown above; then place into the crock-pot and cook on high for 2 hours and then on low for about 6 hours, or until the lamb is cooked as instructed above - soft and spoonable!
- Serve as before.
This was terrific! I braised a 4# boneless leg of lamb for just a bit over 6 hours and it was ready. As promised, it was spoon tender and delicious. I added some parsnips (a personal favorite) but otherwise followed the recipe exactly. I plan on using some of the leftovers by chopping up some meat, adding the appropriate seasonings and making Gyros. I won't be exactly the same thing but should be very tasty. Thanks for sharing this recipe, I'll be making it again, for sure.
Amazing! This created a beautiful Easter dinner for us. We made using the oven method and left it in for 5.5 hours and finished it off on the stovetop for another 1.5 on a simmer. The lamb was perfect... We served with Haricots Verts Salad and Classic Bistro Style Gratin Dauphinoise - French Gratin Potatoes as suggested and it was all wonderful!!
This was wonderful! We had it for dinner on its own, but like this it definitely needed more veggies and starch, so next time I might try with the side suggestions given here. The lamb is very tender and flavourful all the way through.