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Roast Lamb with Fetta and Olive Dressing

Roast Lamb with Fetta and Olive Dressing
Roast Lamb with Fetta and Olive Dressing on a black platter resting on a timber table

Roast lamb with fetta and olive dressing is a Greek inspired roast with a medley of traditional Greek flavours using garlic, oregano, lemon, feta and black olives. Firstly the lamb is marinated with a rub made with garlic, oregano, red wine vinegar, lemon juice and olive oil. Smother the underside of the lamb with this heady mixture and allow it to marinate for an hour or so.

Next up we roast the lamb firstly on high heat to start to render the lamb fat then lower the heat adding some halved waxy kipfler potatoes to soak up the pan juices and continue to cook the lamb to our desired doneness. We particularly like lamb that still has a ‘blush’ to each slice so we cooked ours until it was 55c (140f). We’ve given cooking times and temperatures below if you’d like your lamb a lot pinker, or more well done.

At a Glance This Is What You Need To Make Roast Lamb with Fetta and Olive Dressing

ingredients to make Roast lamb with fetta and olive dressing

Pantry

garlic
dried oregano leaves
red wine vinegar
extra virgin olive oil
freshly ground black pepper
salt flakes
dijon mustard

Shopping List

boned lamb shoulder
small bunch of fresh oregano
lemon
kipfler potatoes
fetta cheese
kalamata olives

Lamb – Our American Friends Need To Catch On

Australians love lamb – that’s no secret. Whether its for a Sunday roast, or lamb sausages and lamb chops on the barbie for Australia Day, we devour its rich, buttery and delicate texture like no one else. There was even a popular ad on television where Naomi Watts turned down a date with Tom Cruise saying “nothing comes before a roast lamb dinner”!

Australians consume around 9kg (20 pounds) of lamb per person each year, whereby Americans eat roughly only 2kg (5 pounds) each so they really need to up their lamb consumption and introduce new recipes for family and friends so the word spreads that eating lamb is ‘bloody delicious’!

Let’s Get Started – Make The Rub And Do Some Rubbing!

How to Choose Lamb Shoulder

Look for lamb shoulder that has generous fat marbling which renders and keeps the meat juicy and the flavour intense. Shoulder meat should be pink with a layer of firm, creamy white fat. Lamb shoulder is invariably cheaper than leg of lamb, and for our money it’s lamb shoulder over leg, every time.

Marinating

Marinades add a gigantic flavour to meat. They also add moisture, particularly when the marinade contains oil as its an effective way to add extra moisture into the meat.

Marinating the meat with a rub of aromatics and oil allows the meat to take on the marinade flavours. When the meat is cooking juices are released along with the marinade and this is what gives the potatoes a glorious flavour.

Because this marinade contains acid in the form of lemon juice and vinegar we don’t advocate marinading overnight. The acids will start to break down the meat leaving you with a grey, almost cooked meat and we don’t want that!

Ready To Cook

Lamb Shoulder Cooking Times

Whether you’re roasting lamb, beef or pork the most reliable way to take the guess work out of your desired doneness is to invest in a meat thermometer. They’re available everywhere and you only need to spend around $20 to insure that your meat is served exactly how you like it.

When your at the right temperature remove the roast from the oven and allow it to rest for 10-15 minutes to allow the juices to redistribute through the meat and be reabsorbed.

Time To Make The Fetta And Olive Dressing

As you can see below the temperature of the lamb continues to rise while it is resting.

Core Cooking Times Using a Meat Thermometer

Rare 48-50c (118f-122f), rested temp 52c-54c (125f-129f)

Medium Rare 52c-54c (125f-129f), rested temp 56c-58c (133f-136f)

Medium 56c-58c (133f-136f), rested temp 60c-62c (140f-144f)

Well Done 65c-68c (149f-155f), rested temp 70c-75c (158f-167f)

If you don’t have a meat thermometer cook the roast for 20 minutes per 500g (1.1 pounds)

Watch How To Make Roast Lamb with Fetta and Olive Dressing

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We would love to hear from you in the comments below when you make this Roast Lamb with Fetta and Olive Dressing

Roast Lamb with Feta and Olive Dressing
Yield: 4-6 serves

Roast Lamb with Fetta and Olive Dressing

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Additional Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes

This delicious roast using lamb shoulder was inspired by Australian cook Karen Martini. The only changes we've made is to use a rolled lamb shoulder, rather than lamb cutlets as Karen did.

Ingredients

  • 1 boned shoulder of lamb weighing approximately 1.5 kg (3.3 pounds) 
  • 6-8 even sized kipfler potatoes, washed, halved and tossed in a little oil and season with salt and pepper
  • 1 knob of garlic halved drizzled with a little oil and sprinkled with salt - optional

Lamb Rub

  • 5 fat cloves of garlic, minced
  • 3 tablespoons dried oregano leaves
  • 3-4 sprigs of fresh oregano, leaves picked
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons fresh extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Fetta And Olive Dressing

  • 1 fat clove of garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons salt flakes or 1 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1 heaped teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon white sugar
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 150ml extra virgin olive oil (5 fl ounces)
  • freshly milled pepper to season
  • 120g Greek fetta cheese, crumbled (5 ounces)
  • about 20 black or kalamata olives, pitted
  • 2-3 stems of fresh oregano, leaves plucked

Instructions

  1. preheat oven to 200c (395f)
  2. make the rub - in a small bowl mix together the garlic, dried oregano, fresh oregano leaves, vinegar, lemon juice, olive oil and pepper mixing well then rub onto the underside of the lamb shoulder
  3. roll lamb tightly and use skewers to secure the roll
  4. leave lamb at room temperature for an hour or so to let the marinade develop and lamb to loose the chill from the fridge
  5. place lamb and garlic - if using in a baking dish, drizzle with olive oil and dust with salt then place the baking dish on the middle shelf of the oven and cook for twenty minutes
  6. remove lamb after twenty minutes and reduce oven temperature to 160c (320f)
  7. add halved potatoes to pan cut side up and return pan to the oven
  8. continue cooking until the lambs internal temperature reaches 55c (131f) this will take about 40 minutes- see notes above for your temperature doneness
  9. turn potatoes after 20 minutes so they can all soak up the lovely pan juices
  10. meanwhile make the dressing - in a small saucepan add garlic, salt, pepper, mustard, vinegar, lemon juice and olive oil heat over medium heat till hot - but not boiling
  11. remove the saucepan from heat and add the olives, fetta and fresh oregano leaves stirring well
  12. remove the lamb from the oven and cover the potatoes and lamb loosely with foil and rest for 10-12 minutes
  13. slice lamb onto a serving platter, surround lamb with the potatoes and spoon dressing over the lamb
  14. serve and enjoy!

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