For the love of meat, Jake Dickson of Dickson Farmstand worked in several farms, a butcher shop and a slaughterhouse. All the effort paid off and he thought of a brilliant business plan: buy your upstate produce online and pick it up in the city from the back of his truck. I bought a boneless leg of lamb from Ehrhardt Farm in Jersey Hill, one of the highest elevations in Tompkins County, New York.
I also ordered a package of fatty bacon and ground pork but I’ll focus on the leg of lamb so that you can replicate it for your end-of-year dinner.
1 4-pound boneless leg of lamb, tied up with butcher’s twine
1/2 cup orange juice
1 cup white wine
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 sprigs of thyme
2 sprigs of rosemary
1. Marinate lamb. Pat leg of lamb dry with a paper towel. On a chopping block as a work surface, drizzle olive oil all over the lamb and rub with pepper. Stuff every nook of leg of lamb with garlic and herbs. Transfer to a large glass container that you can use to marinate. Combine orange juice and white wine in a small bowl and pour into the container to marinate the lamb. Cover with plastic wrap and store in the fridge overnight. Make sure you turn over the lamb after several hours to soak the other side.
2. When ready to cook, remove the lamb from the fridge and let rest at room temperature. Arrange two racks in the oven: the middle rack to hold the lamb and the lower rack to hold a roasting pan to catch the drippings. (Spread chopped carrots, parsnips and onions in the pan for some roasted veggies to go with the lamb.) Preheat oven to 425º. Place the empty aluminum foil-lined roasting pan in the oven while the oven is pre-heating.
3. Cook the lamb. Remove the lamb from the container and pat dry with paper towels. Generously salt and pepper all sides of the lamb. Place directly on middle rack of the oven; the roasting pan below will catch the drippings. Roast for 20 minutes, then reduce the heat to 300º and roast an additional hour, or about 10 minutes per pound. Using a meat thermometer, the thickest part of the lamb must be around 135º for medium-rare. Let stand for half an hour before carving. Use just the drippingsand/or the roasted veggies to serve with the lamb.