Roast Leg of Lamb with Herbs and Kale

  • Serves

    serves 8

  • Cook

    6 hours


The dramatic presentation of a whole leg of lamb is the most fun part about roasting one. Have your butcher clean the protruding bone well and leave about ¼ inch of fat on the outside of the meat. The kale here is simple, but it helps balance the lamb's meaty, assertive flavor with a bright vinegar dressing. Chef Magnus Nilsson also likes to serve this lamb with a dollop of skyr mixed with herbs.


  • 1 (12-lb.) leg of lamb, trimmed
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 12 cup olive oil
  • 4 rosemary sprigs
  • 4 thyme sprigs
  • 2 sage sprigs
  • 1 12 bunches (20 oz.) curly kale, stems removed, leaves torn
  • 14 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 tbsp. distilled white vinegar


Step 1

Heat the oven to 300°. In a large roasting pan, arrange the leg of lamb fat side up. Using a knife, score the fat in a crosshatch pattern, spacing the cuts 1⁄2 inch apart. Season the lamb liberally with salt and pepper, and then rub with the olive oil, rosemary, thyme, and sage. Cover the roasting pan with foil and bake the lamb until very tender, 4 1⁄2 to 5 hours.

Step 2

Remove the roasting pan from the oven and discard the foil. Heat the broiler, and then return the lamb to the oven and broil until the top is golden brown and crisp, 5 to 6 minutes. Transfer the lamb to a rack and let stand for 10 minutes.

Step 3

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, toss the kale with the vegetable oil, vinegar, and 1 teaspoon salt, and let stand for 5 minutes to soften. Carve or shred the lamb and serve from the roasting pan with the kale and skyr

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