1 1/2 - 2 hours
4 - 6
For the rice pilaf
- 1 cup white basmati rice
- 150 grams unsalted butter
- 2 red onions, sliced
- 1 tsp ground allspice
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 3 medium beetroot, scrubbed and grated
For the lamb
- 1.5 kg leg of lamb - get your butcher to de-bone this
- 2 tsp ground allspice
- 4-6 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed
- 2 Tbsp pomegranate molasses
- 1 tsp sea salt
- ½ cup Selaks Reserve Central Otago Pinot Noir
- ½ cup water
Occasion: Time to shine, dinner with the in-laws
Wine Match: Selaks Reserve Central Otago Pinot Noir
To make the rice stuffing, wash the rice in a sieve until the water runs clear. In a medium, heavy-based saucepan, melt the butter and fry the sliced onions for a few minutes. Add the spices and cook over a medium heat for about 10 minutes until onions are completely soft, then add the grated beetroot and cook for a few more minutes.
Add the rice then cover with water to 2cm above the level of the rice. Bring to the boil, covered, then stir once. Replace the lid and reduce heat to low and cook for 7-10 minutes. Remove from the heat and rest the rice for five minutes, with the lid on, while you prepare the lamb.
Preheat the oven to 150 degrees celsius.
For the lamb, combine the ground allspice, crushed garlic, pomegranate molasses and salt and rub over the inside surface of the lamb. Put half of the pilaf inside the leg, tuck the meat around the rice, and tie with string to secure. Place in an oven proof dish, add the wine & water, seal with foil and cook for 1.5 hours.
Remove the lamb from the oven and remove the foil. Increase the oven temperature to 200 degrees Celsius. Pack the rest of the rice pilaf into the dish around the lamb and roast for 15 minutes more, or until the lamb is nicely browned.
Rest for 15 minutes before carving. Serve lamb on flat breads with minted yoghurt and the rice pilaf on the side.
Recipe by Nici Wickes.