Easter is right around the corner and I’m sure we’re all looking for a great meal to make for the holiday. Well look no further! I found this recipe on Foodista.com and thought it would make a great Easter meal full of flavor (compliments to Sheri Wetherell for her fantastic recipe)! I’ll admit this is a tougher sell for those cooking for diabetics- it contains red meat and sugars from the potatoes, but I tweaked Sheri’s recipe a little bit to make it a smidge healthier! Here’s what you’ll need:
1 (2-lb) boneless leg of lamb, (trimmed & tied by the butcher)
3 red potatoes & 3 sweet potatoes, peeled OR 6 sweet potatoes, peeled
3-4 cups of fresh spinach
Rosemary & Garlic Marinade
8-10 relatively large garlic cloves, peeled
1 tbspn chopped fresh rosemary leaves
1 tbspn Kosher salt
1 tbspn black pepper
1 1/2 tbspns of I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter (ICBINB), melted
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1. Preheat your oven to 450F degrees.
2. Create your Garlic Rosemary Marinade by combining all the ingredients above in a food processor. If you don’t have a food processor (like me!) you can use a blender, but I’d advise blending the ingredients as much as you can without the olive oil first. Then slowly add in olive oil to make the marinade smoother. You may need to dig everything up with a spoon a few times! The marinade should be as smooth as possible with no big chunks.
3. Scoop out a small amount of the marinade (maybe 1 tspn) and set it aside. You will use this reserved portion to season the potatoes.
4. Pat dry your lamb with a paper towel. Spread the Garlic Rosemary Marinade on the lamb (you can use the back of a spoon). Set lamb aside for 20-30minutes, or if you have more time 1 hr.
5. While the lamb is marinating, peel your potatoes. Once peeled, wash them and cut them into halves. Place them in a deep bowl and add a dash of salt and pepper along with your reserved marinade. Mix together so that potatoes are coated with the seasoning.
6. Also while your lamb is marinating, rinse your spinach. Depending on the spinach you buy, you may or may not need to check through the leaves for any wilted portions and/or brown stems. If you find these, remove them. Place spinach in a large colander and set aside in your kitchen sink.
1. Once you lamb is done marinating, lightly grease a roasting pan with 1/2 tspn of olive oil. Add your potatoes as a base and then place your lamb on top.
2. Cover pan with aluminum foil and put in the oven. Allow lamb to cook, checking it periodically to see if it’s cooking as you like it. I like my lamb medium, so I cooked it for about 1 1/2hrs. I would add or subtract about 15-20mins of cook time depending on how well done or how rare you like your meat.
3. About 10minutes before the lamb roast looks done (so if you’re going for a “medium” cook that would be around the 1:20 minute mark), start on your spinach. Heat a large skillet on medium/high heat. Add a dash of olive oil (1 tspn is fine) and a dash of salt and pepper.
4. Once your skillet is hot, quickly add in your spinach. Be careful here! Spinach is actually full of water, so once it hits the hot oil on the pan it may splatter. Be sure to quickly add the spinach, keeping your face/body away from potential splatter.
5. Once the spinach cooks down, give it a stir to make sure all the ingredients meld. Then turn off the heat because it’s done!
6. Around this time your lamb should be done as well. Carve it up with your sides of potatoes and spinach and enjoy a great Easter meal!!
1. Give yourself time! This is a more complex recipe, so be sure to give yourself time to pull it all together. I would recommend getting all the ingredients together and starting the whole process a good 2-3hrs before your guests would expect dinner to be served!
2. Use sweet potatoes. If you’re diabetic/cooking for someone who is diabetic, use sweet potatoes as your starch instead of red potatoes (or use both to give any Easter guests the option!). Sweet potatoes have a much lower glycemic index than white potatoes, so diners who are diabetic won’t have to worry about blood sugar spikes. And hey, this is healthier even if you’re not diabetic, so it’s a win-win for everyone!
3. Don’t use butter. I’ve talked about this in other recipes, but I’ve found that ICBINB is a perfectly fine substitute to using fatty butter! It gives the Rosemary & Garlic Marinade a great creaminess and is lower in calories. So skip the unnecessary fat!
4. If you’re going to eat red meat, do it right. If I could do it over again, I would have asked the butcher at Whole Foods to trim off more of the fat from the lamb leg that I purchased; as you can see from the photos, it was pretty fatty! As a general rule we all should be limiting our red meat intake because red meat has a higher fat content and can raise cholesterol levels. This is especially important for those with diabetes as well. I would consider this meal a definite holiday splurge though, not something to eat everyday.
Happy clean eating!