Roast Leg of Lamb with Basil, Pecorino, Garlic & Wine

If you haven’t already seen our review of Diana Henry’s From The Oven To The Table, do pop back to read it. The list of recipes we want to make soon will have you salivating.

In the meantime, we have permission from publishers Mitchell Beazley to share a couple of recipes from the book. Here’s the first, Roast Leg of Lamb with Basil, Pecorino, Garlic & Wine.

Roast Leg of Lamb with Basil, Pecorino, Garlic & Wine

Although the ingredients are very Italian, the inspiration for this recipe is Greek; just the kind of globally-influenced cooking we like!

Roast Leg of Lamb with Basil, Pecorino, Garlic & Wine

This came about after I cooked a Greek dish that had a stuffing made from a Greek cheese (not unlike pecorino) and ground allspice. I’d never thought about a cheese stuffing for lamb before. So this is just something that came out of my kitchen for Sunday lunch one week: Italian ingredients, Greek-inspired.
Author Diana Henry


  • 120 g (4¼ oz) pecorino cheese, finely grated
  • 6 garlic cloves, finely grated finely grated
  • sea salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus more if needed
  • leaves from a small bunch of basil, plus more to serve (optional)
  • 1.8 kg (4 lb) leg of lamb
  • 2 medium red onions, cut into wedges
  • 600 g (1 lb 5 oz) small waxy potatoes scrubbed, then halved or quartered depending on size
  • 350 g (12 oz) red and yellow tomatoes, halved or quartered
  • 250 ml (9 fl oz) white wine


  • Preheat the oven to 220°C fan (450°F), Gas Mark 8.
  • Put the cheese, garlic and some salt into a mortar and pound to a rough purée, gradually adding the olive oil. Tear the basil leaves, add them to the mortar and pound them, too.
  • Place the leg of lamb in a roasting tin. Make deep incisions all over it and push the paste from the mortar down into them. You can also loosen the meat around the bone to make a pocket and push the paste into that, too. Season all over and put into the oven.
  • Roast for 15 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 180°C fan (37 5°F), Gas Mark 5. Add the onions, potatoes and tomatoes to the roasting tin, toss them in the fat in the pan, adding a little more oil if it’s needed to moisten them, then season and roast for a final 45 minutes, adding the wine after 20 minutes. The lamb will be pink. If you prefer it more well done, cook it for a little longer.
  • Remove the lamb to a plate, cover with foil, insulate well (I use old towels or tea towels) and leave to rest for 15 minutes. If the potatoes are tender, cover them and keep warm in a low oven while the lamb rests; if they’re still a bit firm, increase the oven temperature to 200°C fan (410°F), Gas Mark 6½, return the vegetables to the oven, uncovered, and cook until they’re ready.
  • Serve the lamb with the potatoes, tomatoes and onions, scattered with a few basil leaves, if you like.

If you decide to buy this book after reading our content, please consider clicking through our affiliate link, located within the post and in the footnote at the end.

Kavey Eats received a review copy of Diana Henry’s From The Oven To The Table from the publisher Mitchell Beazley. Currently available from Amazon UK for £16.12 (RRP £25).

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2 Comments to "Roast Leg of Lamb with Basil, Pecorino, Garlic & Wine"

  1. Chloe Edges

    Wow this looks totally different from anything I’d have ever thought of doing to a lamb leg. I love it though! I do have a couple of her books but this one is sitting in my list waiting for my birthday! Hurry up July!


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