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Easter eats

Published: 
Saturday, April 4, 2015
Roast leg of lamb with rosemary and garlic

Easter Sunday means roast leg of lamb, simply delicious and easy to prepare. It sits well on a brunch or lunch table. When buying lamb, look for New Zealand spring lamb, it’s smooth, tender and utterly tasty. 

If you are in need of a protein that you can transport to a Sunday or Easter Monday lime then oven roasted leg of lamb is a great crowd pleaser. 

However, as much as I try to popularise lamb, I do understand there are still many out there who still don’t favour it. 

Don’t worry; you can try a delightful whole roasted and stuffed chicken too. Equally delicious and pleasing as well. 

Have a happy and safe weekend, and don’t forget dessert!

Roast leg of lamb with rosemary and garlic

4 lb leg of lamb

2 tbsp Dijon mustard

8 cloves garlic minced

4 tbsp red wine vinegar

2 tsp coarsely cracked black pepper

2 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary or one tbsp, dried

2 tbsp olive oil

2 tsp salt

Method

In a food processor combine garlic, vinegar, mustard, pepper, rosemary and olive oil. Process until combined. Rub marinade over lamb, cover and refrigerate overnight.

Before roasting remove lamb from refrigerator, bring to room temperature and rub salt over lamb.

Preheat oven to 375F and roast lamb for 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until done.

Lamb is usually at its best when a meat thermometer inserted in the thickest part registers 140F.

Allow roast to rest for 15 mins before carving.

n Serves eight to ten

Roasted stuffed chicken with fresh herbs

1 tsp minced garlic

2 tbsp olive oil

2 tbsp minced fresh chives

6 tbsp fresh French thyme

2 tbsp white wine vinegar

1 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary (optional)

1 tsp freshly ground black pepper

1 4 lb chicken, giblets removed

Method

Combine all the above ingredients and rub onto chicken, refrigerate until ready for use.

Stuffing

Giblets from chicken washed in lime juice and minced.

2 tbsp vegetable or olive oil

4 cloves garlic

1 large onion, finely chopped

1/2 cup chopped chives

2 pimento peppers, seeded and chopped

1 hot pepper seeded and chopped

1/3 cup fresh thyme

2 cups, fresh bread crumbs, un-toasted

2 tbsp raisins

1/4 cup grated cheese (optional)

1/4 cup chopped parsley

1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Method

Preheat oven to 375F.

Mince two cloves garlic and combine with black pepper and salt, add to minced giblets. 

Stuffing preparation

Heat oil in a large sauté pan; add garlic and onion, sauté until fragrant. Add giblets and sauté until brown in colour. Add chives, pimento and hot pepper, and thyme. Stir and fry for four minutes until all the herbs become fragrant. Add the breadcrumbs and raisins, stir to combine, gradually add a small amount of chicken stock at a time. Stir until stuffing comes together. Add cheese and parsley, stir. Taste and adjust seasoning. Cool stuffing.

Stuff bird with stuffing, close cavity with toothpicks or string.

Rub bird with butter, bake for one hour basting with pan drippings occasionally.

Remove bird from oven when juices from meat run clear when checked with a metal or wooden skewer.

Remove stuffing immediately.

n Serves four to six 

Pineapple cheasecake pie

Crust

2 cups Ginger Snap cookie crumbs

4 tbsp sugar

1/3 cup butter, melted

Method

Combine ingredients and press into the bottom of a nine-inch springform pan.

Bake for five minutes at 325F until just firm, cool.

Filling

1 1/2 tbsp gelatin

2 tbsp warm water or rum

1/2 cup pineapple juice, retained from tinned pineapple

3 eggs, separated

3/4 cup granulated sugar

2 8 oz pkgs cream cheese

2 cups whipped cream

2 5 1/2 oz tins crushed pineapple well drained

Method

Dissolve gelatin in two tbsp warm water, gently warm until melted, add juice and combine.

Separate eggs and beat yolks with 1/2 cup sugar, add to gelatin mixture and cook over low heat until thick, about five minutes, remove and cool.

Beat egg whites, with clean beaters, until frothy, add the balance of the sugar and continue beating until stiff peaks form.

Beat cream cheese until smooth, add egg and gelatin mixture, fold in crushed pineapple. Fold in whipped cream and egg whites.

Spoon into prepared crust cover well with plastic wrap and freeze overnight until firm.

Remove from freezer, let stand for about five minutes, remove from tin, slice while still frozen and serve immediately. Store leftovers in freezer.

​n Makes one ten-inch icebox pie

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