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Will Eight-Hour Lamb with Feta Sway the Finicky College Student?

eight hour lamb

eight hour lamb

Right now I am sitting at my computer as the smell of garlicky lamb wafts by. I just got a gorgeous new cook book, What Katie Ate by food blogger Katie Quinn Davies and am trying out my  first recipe from it, Eight-hour Lamb with Feta. This woman can take pictures; I love her photography and food styling and the recipes seem pretty great, too….I’ll soon find out when we bite into the lamb. I find cookbooks like this so inspiring. In my quest to be a better picture taker/ blogger I have signed up for my first food blog conference, the International Food Blogger Conference 2013, which conveniently happens in Seattle this September. I’m very excited about meeting other bloggers and learning to use my camera better!

Back to the lamb…. I decided to make the lamb today for a couple of reasons. First of all, this is Miss G.’s last day at home for spring break, so I wanted to make a very nice meal before  she leaves tonight. Until recently, she was trying out being a pescetarian. The call of the hamburger was too strong, though, so this phase lasted only a couple of months. She has now decided that she will eat all meat, except for pork and, maybe, lamb. She is pretty adamant about the pork, claiming it would be like eating a dog, as pigs are very smart, clean and adorable animals. Uuhhhh, where did this child come from?

“How can one live without sausage?”, I ask, “or carnitas?”

Does not she realize that pork is the other “white meat”? She is unyielding to my arguments of the virues of tasty pork, but I’m hoping to sway her in keeping lamb in her diet with today’s meal.  Secondly, Easter is next weekend, so I want to try this recipe out beforehand to see if it should be on the menu.

Eight Hours Later:

Dinner is over; the lamb is a hit. Miss G. enjoyed it, but still swears it is her last time eating lamb. I pretty much doubled the original recipe, as I had a five pound hunk of leg of lamb. I was worried I might need more time since the original recipe called for cooking a 2.5 pound leg of lamb for eight hours. I needn’t have worried –  it was falling off the bone tender. I should have basted a little more often; it was just a smidge dry. However, the wonderfully tangy herb and lemon dressing totally compensated for any percieved dryness. I’m very excited about the feta I used; it is from Appel Farms in Ferndale, Washington – so fairly local- and it was so good. I served the lamb with a greek salad and some hot naan bread (the naan bread at the grocery store looked so much fresher and fluffier than the pita bread). Roasted potatoes would have been much appreciated by the vultures family, but I’m trying to have us eat just a little bit healthier…..


Eight-Hour Lamb with Feta

adapted from What Katie Ate by Katie Quinn Davies


  • 4 onions, cut into quarters
  • 2 bunches rosemary (I just used dried rosemary)
  • 5-6 pound leg of lamb
  • 4 bulbs garlic, cut in half through their equators
  • 12 cloves garlic, peeled and cut in half lengthwise
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1-2 cups crumbled feta or soft goat cheese
  • lemon wedges and lemon zest
  • ******herb and lemon dressing *************
  • large handful fresh basil
  • large handful fresh italian parsley
  • large handful fresh mint
  • 1 T. dijon mustard
  • 1 T. sherry vinegar
  • 1 T. salted capers, rinsed
  • 2-3 anchovy fillets, drained
  • 1 lemon, juice of and zest
  • 1/2 cup olive oil (add more if needed)

Cooking Directions:

  1. Place the onion along with the garlic halves with the cut side up on the bottom of a roasting pan and scatter one bunch of rosemary sprigs over them.
  2. Place the leg of lamb on top and pour a glug or two of olive oil over the lamb. Cut 12 slits into the lamb and push two garlic halves into each slit along with some rosemary sprigs. Season generously with salt and pepper and drizzle with a little more oil. Cover loosely with foil, tucking it in around the inside of the pan.
  3. Roast a 315 degrees F. for 8 hours, checking occasionally, adding a splash of water or white wine if it is looking dry. Remove from oven and let rest for 20 minutes before shredding the meat; it should easily fall from the bone.
  4. Dressing: Place the herbs, mustard, vinegar, capers, anchovies, lemon juice and zest and olive oil in a food processor and process until a paste forms. Add oil oil as needed. The consistency should be a little runnier than a pesto.
  5. Arrange the lamb and crumbled feta on a platter and drizzle over the dressing. Serve with lemon wedges and sprinkle with lemon zest.

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{ 2 comments… add one }

  • architect mom March 28, 2013, 2:26 pm

    It’s good – I’m going to serve it on Sunday along with the Lamb of God…..Feeds 6-8!

  • Beth Hamlin March 27, 2013, 8:25 am

    Between the photo and your description, I can virtually taste this dish Joan. I’ve never tried it, but I love the combination of lemon, feta and lamb. Served as a main dish, how many adults do you think the five pounds of lamb would feed? All of us readers will certainly be the beneficiaries of your September blogging conference!

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