Irini Tzortzoglou’s slow-roasted lamb with garlic, herbs, lemon, mustard and honey

This slow-roasted lamb dish packs flavour into every bite – the perfect Sunday feast for the family.

slow-roasted lamb
David Loftus


2kg leg of lamb
4 garlic cloves, peeled, each cut into 3 slices lengthwise
a few sprigs of fresh rosemary
juice and zest of 2 unwaxed lemons
1 tbsp mustard
1 tbsp honey
100ml extra virgin olive oil
a bunch each of fresh oregano,
thyme and mint, finely chopped

1. Preheat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Lay two very large pieces of baking parchment at right angles to each other in a large, deep roasting tray.

2. Trim the lamb of all its excess fat, then wash, pat dry and lay on a large board. Make slits all over the lamb with a small knife and push pieces of garlic into the slits. Put the lamb on the baking parchment in the roasting tray and add the rosemary sprigs.

3. Put the lemon juice, zest, mustard and honey into a small jug, whisk to combine, then add the olive oil in a thin, steady stream, whisking all the time. Finally, add all the chopped herbs.

4. Drizzle some of this mixture over one side of the lamb and rub it in so that it coats the meat well. Season generously with salt and pepper then turn the lamb over and do the same on the other side.

5. Wrap the lamb with the baking parchment to form a parcel and secure with kitchen string. Place the tray in the oven for 15 minutes, then reduce the heat to 160C/140C fan/ gas 3 and leave to cook for another 2½ hours. At the end of this time, take the parcel out of the oven, cut a slit down the length of the paper, pushing it back a little to reveal the meat. Baste with the juices, then increase the temperature to 180C/160C fan/ gas 4, return to the oven and cook for another 30 minutes.

6. Remove from the oven then transfer the slow-roasted lamb to a large, warm platter. Cover and let it rest for 10-15 minutes before carving.

7. Pass the juices from the tray through a strainer into a saucepan. Using a spoon remove any fat floating on top of the juices, then heat them to reduce (if needed) and pour into a jug to serve with the lamb.

Buy the book with £8 off

under the olive tree cookbookOur recipes are from Under the Olive Tree by Irini Tzortzoglou, which will be published by Headline on 23 July, price £25. To order a copy for £16.99 until 2 August go to and enter the code YOUOLIVE at the checkout. Book number: 9781472271877. For terms and conditions, see