Let’s make the most of this great weather and get outside for a barbecue this weekend. This Summer Barbecued Roast of Lamb recipe looks delicious, as does this Barbecued Artichokes with Almonds recipe. For the veggies, or less adventurous cooks among us, a luxurious tart of buttery leeks, mascarpone and smoked garlic will go down a treat too. Follow the recipes for all three here, taken from new book Friends At My Table by Alice Hart...
Summer Barbecued Roast of Lamb recipe
‘This may seem a strange recipe at first glance, but I developed it from an old French technique I read about, to free up the oven and do away with any notions of tending a barbecue for hours,’ says Alice Hart. ‘The lamb is first seared, then put in a hot oven, then left to finish cooking wrapped in a thick blanket. A large griddle pan or frying pan will suffice for searing the lamb if you don’t have the wherewithal to barbecue it. The herb paste is a gutsy cousin to salsa verde. Half is rubbed over the lamb before searing, half is let down with good olive oil and served alongside the cooked meat.’
Enough for 20 as part of this menu – easily halved to serve 6-8 as a main course
Prep: 20 minutes
Cook 45 minutes, plus 3-4 hours resting
For the herb paste
large bunch of chervil, roughly chopped
large bunch of parsley, roughly chopped
large bunch of basil, roughly chopped
10 fat garlic cloves, peeled
small can of anchovies in olive oil, drained
280g jar sundried tomatoes in oil, drained
4 red chillies, deseeded and roughly chopped
extra virgin olive oil, to loosen
2 large (around 2kg) lamb shoulders
‘No getting around it, unless you are a masterly and proficient chopper, this is a job for a food processor,’ says Alice. ‘Cram everything for the herb paste in with a hefty twist of pepper and only a pinch of salt (the anchovies are salty). Pour in about a wine glass of olive oil – enough to get the blades moving, in other words – then press the pulse button, stopping to scrape everything down the sides a couple of times. You’re aiming for a rusty red ‘salsa verde’ with a thick but nubbly texture. Scoop half the mixture into a bowl and stir in more olive oil to loosen. This will be your sauce, to serve with the lamb, so cling film the top and chill it for up to five days, until needed. The rest will serve as a herb paste, to rub over the lamb shoulders. Of course, this can also be kept for a few days before using.
Rub the thick portion of the herb paste over the lamb shoulders, covering the entire surface. Preheat the oven to 220°C/fan 200°C/425°F/gas mark 7. Light the barbecue and wait until the coals are white hot and glowing in places. Quickly sear each lamb shoulder on the metal grate, until beginning to char on the outside, for no more than 10 minutes. You want to imbue the lamb with smoke, not cook it. Transfer both shoulders to a large roasting tin.
Roast in the preheated oven for 30 minutes. The lamb will be well-coloured but shouldn’t be burnt. Immediately cover the tin in four layers of thick tin foil, sealing the edges tightly and trapping the heat in. Now wrap in a thick blanket or a few old towels. Set aside for three hours for rare; four hours for medium-rare. The shoulders will hold for an hour or so longer, if needed. Unwrap the lamb and slice each shoulder thickly on a board. Serve with the herb sauce.
Barbecued Artichokes with Almonds recipe
‘Those young, purple artichokes are such a treat but preparing them is, quite frankly, a sod,’ says Alice. ‘Large globe artichokes are far more amenable, proving greater square footage for the effort of trimming them and removing the choke. I stumbled upon this way of preparing them on the barbecue. The slightly blackened but tender artichokes work so well with a simple dressing and a handful of toasted almonds.’
Prep: 30 minutes
Cook: 20-25 minutes
For the dressing
1 garlic clove, crushed
4 tbsp good balsamic vinegar
1 tsp wholegrain mustard
175ml extra virgin olive oil
For the artichokes
10 globe artichokes
10 bay leaves
100g flaked almonds, toasted
Handful of parsley, chopped
Start by whisking the garlic, balsamic vinegar, mustard and olive oil together. This can be done a few days in advance and kept chilled.
Cut the top third from each artichoke, just enough so you can dig down with a teaspoon and pull out the hairy choke from the centre. With a small paring knife, pare away the tough outside of the stalk and any tough leaves at the bottom. Stick a bay leaf into the centre.
Make sure the barbecue coals are white hot, with no trace of flame. Wrap each artichoke tightly in foil and barbecue over indirect heat for 20–25 minutes. Once unwrapped, the artichokes should be tender and slightly charred at the edges.
Serve warm or cool, with a generous amount of dressing spooned over – concentrating on the centres – and the almonds and parsley scattered on top. The tops of the leaves will not be edible (the bases are) and need to be pulled away from the artichoke to eat, so provide a few fingerbowls with lemon slices.
Click here for the Luxurious Tart of Buttery Leeks, Mascarpone and Smoked Garlic recipe
Recipes taken from Friends At My Table by Alice Hart, published by Quadrille. Photos ©EMMA LEE
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Emily Peck, Editor
View all posts by Emily Peck, Editor