Julie Anne & Nick Rhodes by Rex
I do get homesick for England. One of the things I miss most (apart from my daughter and friends) is the traditional Sunday roast lunch. This is not the kind of meal you cook for one.
The Swan in Notting Hill
I miss being able to pop down to the pub for a roast lunch, however I hear both the Palihouse Hotel and Cecconi’s are now offering a proper English Sunday lunch right here in Los Angeles.
Julie Anne with prawns for starters
I still made sure I got my fill last summer while back in London (visiting for Tatjana’s art show and University graduation). I dined at The Swan, The Landsdown, The Mitre, and The Pigs Ear pubs with friends every weekend.
The Mitre Pub, Holland Park
I love roast beef with Yorkshire pudding slathered in gravy, and roast chicken with crispy roast potatoes.
Julie Anne Rhodes with Miranda Davis at The Pigs Ear
Of course I had to have the roast pork with crackling at The Pigs Ear. Crackling is a layer of crispy golden-brown fat on the top of the roast. Still commonly used in China and Great Britain. Sadly… it is nigh on impossible to buy a pork roast with the fat and rind still intact on the surface of the roast in America…. and it’s the best part!
Roast pork with crackling, cabbage, broccoli, and carrots
However, my favorite roast of all is a fragrant leg of lamb with Mint Sauce (or jelly when I’m feeling lazy). Roasts are surprisingly easy to do. It is by far and away the easiest way to feed a party of 10-12 people. Hope you enjoy this simple recipe.

Roasted Leg of Lamb
Servings: 6

Ingredients:

5-6 pound bone-in leg of lamb
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, finely chopped
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoon olive oil
4 large russet potatoes (or golden sweet potatoes), peeled and cubed
3 large carrots, peeled and cut into 3/4 pieces
3 large parsnips, peeled and cut into 3/4 pieces
1 1/2 cups broth or water
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons of water

Directions:

1). Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Let leg of lamb come to room temperature in a large roasting pan.

2). Mix rosemary, garlic, salt, pepper, and olive oil in the bottom of a large bowl. Reserving half the mixture in the bowl, use half of the mixture to rub well all over the leg of lamb while it comes to room temperature.

3). Add potatoes, carrots, and parsnips to the mixture remaining in the large bowl, and toss well to coat. Pour vegetables around leg of lamb in roasting pan.

4). Place pan in oven and roast for 30 minutes. Turn heat down to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, and continue to roast. After 1 hour start checking the internal temperature of the roast, every 15 minutes, by inserting a meat thermometer into thickest part (but not touching the bone). When meat reaches 130 -135 degrees it should be a perfect medium rare. Remove from oven, and allow it to rest, tented with foil to preserve heat, for 15 -20 minutes before carving.

5). Transfer vegetables to a casserole dish and return to oven. Meanwhile, add 1 1/2 cups of broth or water to the roasting pan, place over stove top burner on medium-high, and deglaze the pan by scraping up any meat drippings and brown bits off the bottom and sides of the pan, bringing liquid to a boil, stirring frequently for 5 minutes or until liquid reduces to about 1 cup.

6). Mix flour and 2 tablespoons of water into a smooth paste in a small bowl. Reduce heat to medium-low under roasting pan. Gradually add flour paste to the pan liquid, stirring constantly, and cook until gravy is thickened as desired. If lumps have formed, strain though a sieve before serving.

7). Carve meat as desired, and serve with vegetables and gravy.

Serving Suggestions: Traditionally one would make mint sauce (which is nothing more than ½ cup English malt vinegar mixed with ½ cup finely chopped fresh mint leaves and 1 Tablespoon white or brown sugar brought to a boil then cooled to room temperature), but I took the easy option here and used mint jelly. We tend to prefer the higher fiber option of golden sweet potatoes, but roasted exactly as you would regular potatoes. Here we’ve also served roasted beets, steamed spinach, cauliflower and celeriac puree, and roasted carrots (I happen to love roasted parsnips too, but didn’t have any on hand).

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  • February 18, 2010
    3:55 pm

    Hi Julie Anne,yes, there is nothing like a delicious roastie on a Sunday. I worked for a client a couple of months back who actually bought a British traditional piece of pork, crackling and all. Apparently she bought it at a butcher's on Montana Ave in Santa Monica.

  • February 18, 2010
    4:08 pm

    Roast lamb is my favorite and i do actually make it for one person! makes lots of lovely leftovers.

  • February 18, 2010
    6:06 pm

    Ah, the carnivore returns. Yorkies are wonderful and should not be eaten except on special occasions and family get togethers. My sister used to go the British resort area in Spain when they were living in Taragona for Sunday roast. They had a huge following with all the wintering Brits.Cathy Garossino

  • February 18, 2010
    8:47 pm

    Yep Cathy… promised not all vegan. I just try to do a couple vegan or vegetarian days a week. Charity… I just never think of making a leg of lamb when Tatjana is not home, or I'm having company over.Hillary… Lets find out the right address, and make roast pork with crackling for the Brit transplants here once I am up to it again!

  • February 19, 2010
    1:38 am

    The vegans and vegetarians "miss out" on the crackling and the meat, but they can still have a Brit Sunday lunch style meal with Yorkshire pudding. And it's filling while much lighter on the stomach than a traditional roast. So you're full but you can run around a lot more than the omnivores after eating it. ;)I used to be vegan and sometimes still do Yorkshires with soya milk because I like the fluffy consistency it gives as well as the very clean taste. This would be classed as Yorkshire Pud sacrilage but I'm a Yorkshire girl so I can do with it as I like. ;)I make large Yorkshires in small cake tins with the soya milk (but still using the eggs these days) so that I can serve them on a plate filled with gravy and the vegetables. I use veg gravy granules but improve upon it with onions, mushrooms, veg stock and soy sauce. I always have mixed carrot and turnip with it because that's a very Yorkshire thing. And If I'm feeling particularly indulgent I also have slices of Linda McCartney's "meatless meatloaf" recipe which I always make in abundance because it freezes so well and I can eat a ton of it….and if I finish off with a lovely home made rice pudding I too am unable to run around and join the meat eaters in "resting off" the large lunch.

  • February 20, 2010
    12:10 am

    Hi Julie Anne,mmmmm…..any roast is a good roast, however I do agree that the lamb roast is right up there as my favourite. As for pork crackling, OMG I love it. My husband is not a fan but I am a sucker for it. You just cannot have roast pork without the crackling. I have never had Yorkshire pudding and I am quite curious as to what it tastes like. Perhaps now I will. Aussie MumP.S. Hope you are feeling much better……Here is yet another message from my Little Book of Hope….He who has health has hope; and he who has hope, has everyting.PROVERB

  • February 20, 2010
    8:35 am

    Hi Aussie Mum… I had to do 80 Yorkshire puddings for a party last year, so I got the technique down to a science….let me see if I can find my notes in that client's file and post my recipe for you soon.

  • February 20, 2010
    9:35 pm

    I've been reading your blog for awhile, I just never posted until now. I'm the main cook at my house and I'm bored stiff with what I cook. Your blog inspires me and I hope to give some of your recipes a try SOON!Continue down your road to healing. ps…did I mention I was a big DD fan back in the day. They continue to be one of my fav bands.

  • February 22, 2010
    12:01 am

    Hi Julie Anne,Wow! 80 Yorkshire puddings seems so much, no wonder you are an expert at it.Would love the recipe, however no rush….you need to rest first, so no need to find that recipe just yet. Aussie Mum