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ROAST LEG OF LAMB WITH RAS EL HANOUT & Turkish spoon salad



Serves: 4

RAS EL HANOUT

Don't be put off this recipe by the number of ingredients. The spice mix is simple to make…although you can buy it. It keeps well in a jar and can be used so many other dishes. It lends a wonderful aromatic flavour to the lamb.

2 teaspoons black peppercorns
2 teaspoons fennel seeds
4 teaspoons coriander seeds
16 cardamom pods
2 teaspoons yellow mustard seeds
4 teaspoons cumin seeds
1 cinnamon stick
1⁄2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons turmeric

2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon sea salt

Gently toast the peppercorns, fennel, coriander, cardamom, mustard, cumin and cinnamon until fragrant. Combine with the remaining ingredients and grind with a mortar and pestle or a spice grinder until powdered. Keep in an airtight container.

For the lamb
4 cloves garlic, peeled
1⁄2 teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
2kg leg of lamb
500ml chicken stock
Crush the garlic to a paste with the salt. Mix with the olive oil and 4-5 tablespoons of the ras el hanout then smear this mixture all over the lamb. Leave to marinate in the refrigerator for at least 1-2 hours or overnight.

Preheat the oven to 200°C.
Place the lamb leg in a baking dish and pour the chicken stock around.
Roast for 2 hours, during the cooking time, glaze the lamb at least 2 or 3 times with the cooking liquid.

Spoon Salad
2       very ripe vine-ripened tomatoes, skinned and finely diced
1       long red pepper, seeded and finely diced
2       red chilli peppers, seeded and finely diced
1       small Lebanese cucumber, peeled, seeded and finely diced
1       large shallot, peeled and finely diced
2       tablespoons finely chopped parsley leaves
½      teaspoon dried mint
½      teaspoon pomegranate molasses
1       teaspoon red wine vinegar
3       tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
         Salt and black pepper

To make the salad, place the diced tomatoes, pepper, chillies, cucumber and shallot on a large chopping board. Use a very sharp large knife to chop them all together. You are aiming for well-integrated, even and fine dice. Scrape into a large mixing bowl and add all the remaining ingredients, reserving 2 tablespoons of the extra-virgin olive oil. Stir well so that everything is very well combined and leave for 20 minutes to macerate.

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