Kamouraska Lamb Crusted with Salted Herbs for Easter

This traditional Easter recipe comes straight from Quebec’s heartland: Kamouraska Lamb Crusted with Salted Herbs.

Kamouraska Lamb 2

Kamouraska is a pretty little village on the lower Saint Lawrence River, where the lambs spend their days grazing in the sun and wind along the river’s edge. The grass the animals eat is washed with salt water from the sea, which gives the meat a naturally salty flavour.

The salty sea flavour is further enhanced by coating the lamb meat in a thick coat of salted herbs from the same region.

The lamb is traditionally served with roasted vegetables, potatoes gratin dauphinoise, maple glazed carrots, crisp steamed green beans, mint jelly, and some kind of seasonal maple treat for dessert, such as sugar pie or crepes.

In Montreal, you can buy Kamouraska lamb at Marché Jean-Talon, the Atwater Market or any serious butcher, such as Le Maître Boucher in NDG.


Lamb Crusted with Salted Herbs
with Roasted Vegetables

 

Ingredients

  • 5-7 pound leg of lamb
  • 4 cloves of garlic, peeled and cut into slivers
  • 3-4 Tablespoons Dijon mustard (smooth, not grainy)
  • About 1/2 a jar (500 ml) of Les Herbes Salées du Bas-du-Fleuve
  • 4 stalks of celery, roughly chopped
  • 2 small turnips, peeled and diced into 2-inch chunks
  • 4 carrots, peeled and chopped into 2-inch lengths
  • 3 medium onions, peeled and quartered

 

How To

Remove leg of lamb from the refrigerator at least 1-2 hours before cooking.

Prepare the celery, carrots, turnips, carrots, and onions. If you’re not serving the lamb with potatoes gratin dauphinoise (scalloped potatoes), you can throw a few potatoes in as well.

Arrange the vegetables in an even layer in the bottom of a greased roasting pan. Season with salt and pepper. Add some water to the bottom of the pan, but not so much that it touches the meat.

Preheat oven to 450 °F.

Score the leg of lamb all over with lines 2-3 inches apart and 1/4 deep, then insert the slivers of garlic into the meat using the tip of a sharp, pointed knife. Season generously with salt and pepper.

Slather meat with Dijon mustard, then cover the roast with a layer of salted herbs (herbes salées), pressing gently to adhere.

Place roast in the oven, immediately reduce the heat to 325 °F and cook until thermometer inserted diagonally into center of the roast (don’t touch the bone) registers 140°F for medium-rare, 155°F for medium and 165°F for well done.

It works out to about 20 minutes per pound, depending on how well done you want your roast.

Once you reach your desired internal temperature, remove the lamb from oven and allow to rest for another 20-30 minutes.

It’s important to let the roast rest as it will lock in the juices give you a juicier roast, plus the meat keeps cooking, which will increase the meat’s internal temperature by about five more degrees, giving you a final internal temperature of:

  • 145°F for medium rare
  • 160°F for medium
  • 170°F for medium

For more precise cooking times, please visit Ontario Lamb’s website.

Scrape off the layer of salted herbs and discard, then slice the lamb roast and arrange on a platter with roasted vegetables.

If you don’t know how to carve your leg of lamb properly, watch this great video on How to Carve the Perfect Leg of Lamb. 

Bon appétit and Happy Easter!

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