Seemingly designed for the grill, a butterflied leg of lamb comes out perfectly medium-rare exactly when the outside develops a nice crust over medium-high heat. In addition to the easy cooking technique, this leg of lamb has a smooth lamby flavor with just the right amount of chew, making every bite a pleasure.
It's hard to improve on something already so good, but add mint to the equation and you're talking some seriously, seriously delicious eats. The two come together here as part of a tahini and lemon based marinade, which added a minty tang to the crust, only heightening this leg of lamb into one of the best pieces of meat to come off my grill this year.
Grilled Butterflied Leg of Lamb
Adapted from Martha Stewart
- For the marinade:
- 1/2 cup tahini
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
- 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (3 to 4 lemons)
- 1 cup loosely packed mint leaves
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 4 tablespoons water
- 1 1/2 teaspoons coarsely ground black pepper
- 3/4 teaspoon sherry vinegar
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
- Salt to taste
- 3 1/4 pounds shank half of a butterflied leg of lamb
- 3 lemons, thinly sliced
- Fresh mint, for garnish
Combine all of the ingredients for the marinade in a blender and process until smooth. Place lamb in a large Ziploc bag and pour in marinade. Seal and toss bag to coat the lamb evenly, open and reseal the bag, removing as much air as possible. Let stand at room temperature for 1 hour or refrigerate up to overnight. If refrigerated, let lamb return to room temperature before grilling.
Light one chimney full of charcoal. When all the charcoal is lit and covered with gray ash, pour out and spread coals evenly over the charcoal grate. Clean and oil the cooking grate. Remove the lamb from the marinade and grill until well browned, 12 to 16 minutes; turn and cook 12 to 16 minutes more, or until an instant-read thermometer registers 140°F in thickest part (for medium rare). Transfer lamb to a cutting board and let rest for 15 minutes.
While lamb is resting, grill lemon slices for garnish. Cut lamb into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Serve with grilled lemon and fresh mint.