Moroccan Mechoui (Slow Roasted Bone-In Lamb Leg)

And today I’m posting the Moroccan Leg of Lamb recipe promised last Friday.  It turned out very well.  I had a pot luck supper here, for five (one person had to bail at the last minute, so we were four).  Theme was Mediterranean, and the others made vegetarian sides to go around the lamb.  Mechoui is a preparation typically using the whole lamb, but who has space for that??  There would be an earthen fire pit, but failing having that at this point… and wanting to watch the temperature more accurately — it’s an oven here.  It’s not a quick cook and go dish, the flavors and tenderness are enhanced by Low and Slow.
Leg of lamb, Moroccan, Mechoui, ras al hanout, Paleo, Whole 30, recipe

Moroccan Leg of Lamb, bone-in, slow braised and tender

This leg came from Sepe Farm, a small grass-fed farm in Newtown, Connecticut.  This leg, especially under this preparation, is NOT gamey, but it is definitely not beef.  Very tender, and the fat has been largely rendered out.  Highly recommended!
lamb, recipe, moroccan, leg of lamb, mechoui

Two hours of slow braising left. I’ve just basted.

My source for cooking times and some information about this dish is from The Spruce, a reliable resource for recipes.  I decided to use a ras al hanout rub, which is similar to the rub they used since the ras al hanout has more spices.
Prep Time:  20 minutes
Cook Time: 7.5 – 8 hours + 20 minutes to brown
Rest Time:  10 minutes
Serves: 8-10
Cuisine: Moroccan
Leftovers:  Yep.  

Moroccan Mechoui

  • 1 bone in leg of lamb, about 7 pounds (3 kg).  (If you use a leg of around 4 pounds (2 kg) or less, lessen the cooking time.)
  • 1 tablespoon Ras al Hanout.
  • 1 tablespoon oil (regular olive oil, or avocado oil)
  • 3 tablespoons softened butter, or ghee.
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and pressed.
  • an OPTIONAL 1/3-1/4 cup (60-80 mL) of concentrated homemade lamb bone broth.  (You can omit entirely, or use a beef bone broth instead.)
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon

Pre-heat oven to 250 F / 121 C.

Cut off excess fat from the lamb (do leave some fat and fat cap on,, especially if you use a grass-fed leg from a conscientious farmer), then take a sharp knife and make several deep cuts into the leg in various locations.  I made about 15.

Mix the Ras al Hanout, oil, butter, and garlic together in a small bowl.

Rub all over the lamb, pushing some of this rub into the crevices you’d made with your knife.

Set in a deep cooking tray, and add in the additional bone broth to the bottom of the pan (if you have it).   Cover tightly with aluminum (aluminium?) foil.

Cook for 7.5 – 8 hours at that 250 F/ 121 C.  Every hour or two, remove from oven and baste.  Re-cover and return to oven.

When it has finished cooking, the meat will be tender, and will have drawn back from the bone.  Liquids should run clear when pierced.

Re-set oven to 475 F /  246 C.

Remove foil, baste once again, add the lemon juice over the top.  Return to oven without foil, and cook for another 20 minutes at this higher temperature, allowing the meat to brown.

Remove from oven and allow to rest for at least 15 minutes, tented with your foil.

lamb pre-carved

Carve, serve, enjoy!  For further veracity, have a few separate cellars of salt, cumin, and the like on the table, for people to dip the meat into as they eat.  (I did omit this step, this time.  For one, we’re all watching our sodium levels, which may not be so necessary in the hot and arid Moroccan desert.)

Leg of lamb, moroccan, mechoui, recipe

Our spread. No one went home hungry.


It makes wonderful leftovers…. As I type this I am enjoying a lamb, scallion, cheddar cheese breakfast omelet, seasoned with additional ground pepper and turmeric.

I reserved the juice from the lamb, refrigerated and then scraped off the fat — this will become the base for a soup.  The bone will be reserved for some future lamb bone broth – there’s still marrow deep inside, as well as collagen and flavors to be had.


Oh:  for true veracity, here’s a short video from YouTube showing lamb mechoui (the whole animal) being made/but mostly served in Morocco, using traditional methods.  The video quality is unfortunately lacking, but the spirit is here.


Linking to:  Fiesta Friday.   Hosts for Fiesta Friday this week are:  Jhuls @ The Not So Creative Cook and Jen @ Apply To Face Blog.
Linking to:  Full Plate Thursdays.
Do drop by and enjoy the parties!
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About goatsandgreens

The foodie me: Low/no gluten, low sugars, lots of ethnic variety of foods. Seafood, offal, veggies. Farmers' markets. Cooking from scratch, and largely local. The "future" me: I've now moved to my new home in rural western Massachusetts. I am raising chickens (for meat and for eggs) and planning for guinea fowl, Shetland sheep, and probably goats and/or alpaca. Possibly feeder pigs. Raising veggies and going solar.
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12 Responses to Moroccan Mechoui (Slow Roasted Bone-In Lamb Leg)

  1. Pingback: Moroccan Mechoui (Slow Roasted Bone-In Lamb Leg) — Of Goats and Greens | My Meals are on Wheels

  2. Nila Oo says:

    It looks amazing. Could eat that now!

  3. Jhuls says:

    This sounds so tasty! I haven’t made anythinf like this before and it is difficult for me to find ras el hanout. Thanks for sharing at Fiesta Friday party this week! Have a lovely weekend!

  4. Laura says:

    Wow – this reminds me how much I loved to slow cook and feast on lamb before I went my veggie ways. Not much beats it – especially with such a complimentary spice mix!

  5. Looks yummy! I have had slow roasted lamb on my to-do list and this looks like the perfect recipe,

  6. helenfern says:

    WOW – fall off the bone tender! This looks incredible – Thanks for sharing at the What’s for Dinner party. Hope to see you next week too! Have a great week!

  7. Pingback: Lamb Broth Soup with Brussels Sprouts | Of Goats and Greens

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