Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Spring lamb with herbs and garlic....

Everything is open
Nothing is set in stone
Rivers turn to oceans
Oceans tide you home
Home is where the heart is
But your heart had to roam
Drifting over bridges
Never to return
Watching bridges burn
You're driftwood floating underwater
Breaking into pieces, pieces, pieces
Just driftwood, hollow and of no use
Waterfalls will find you, bind you, grind you

There's something special about Bryher in winter. You can walk around the island and not see another soul. Trawl along the beaches...the first person that day, that week, maybe even that month...and not know what you will find.

When you look what washes up on our shores you wonder about the story behind it. A shoe buried in the seaweed. Did a sailor in Greece laugh as his shoes fell into the sea only to wash up hundreds of miles away?

In October a coastguard in Cornwall found a french love letter in a bottle. It was written to her married lover as he returned to his wife. It was one of the most beautiful and moving pieces of writing I had ever held in my hands....

It opened with: "I'm not, and nor are you. When I am dead and that I will have lost the spark of my 20s, and I know that happens, at this point I will come back to you and you in turn will give me back your extraordinary passion for living. I am not dead. Yet."

Yesterday I found something far less passionate...

Where did it come from? As I wandered across Green Bay I also found a cabbage leaf and half a leek....far less exciting and romantic than a love letter. What have you found?

Spring lamb with herbs and garlic....(Serves 6)

4lb rolled lamb joint
4 tbsp redcurrant jelly (and more to serve)
4 slices bread...(made into crumbs)
1 handful rosemary
1 handful thyme
1 handful parsley
3 cloves garlic

My mum cooks in an Aga so I'm not sure what temperature to put his at. I think 180'c would be fine. Interestingly when my mum and dad moved into our farmhouse the first thing she said to my dad was "That aga has got to go." My dad said they would keep it for a year and then get an electric's still here and is my mum's pride and joy.

Anyway back to the recipe. Take the lamb out of the fridge and let it rest (covered) for an hour or so to let it get to room temperature. In a bowl mix the bread, herbs and garlic.

Pop the jelly in a small pan and let it melt. Brush generously over the lab and stick the stuffing to the top.

At this point we put it in the oven...but it got a little....char grilled *
(* burnt) on top. So I recommend you cover it with foil for the first hour and then remove for the rest of the cooking.

Cook for two and a half to three hours depending on how pink you like it. Leave to rest for 15 minutes.

Serve with fresh vegetables....(note the broccoli is not the one from the beach...I draw a line there!)

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