As the days get longer and warmer, we are extremely lucky in the UK to be blessed with an abundance of delicious, seasonal ingredients. And with the current challenging times upon us and families stuck at home, it’s even more important to make the most of what is readily available to keep healthy, but also to save money.
As one of the leading English Sparkling Wine producers, we at Wiston Estate are fortunate to have our wines served in some of the best restaurants in the UK. In the light of the COVID-19 pandemic we want to take this opportunity to champion the fantastic chefs that we work with and help encourage people to buy local in support of their local farmers. Because of their purity and freshness, English Sparkling Wines pair fantastically with food so if we can inspire people to be drinking more of our wines with their meals then all the better!
The first recipe in our Chef Series has been prepared by the brilliant Dom Goring, who is Sous Chef at Skye Gyngell’s Hearth Restaurant, Heckfield Place. The surname may sound familiar as he is Pip's youngest son and credits her as the inspiration behind his career in cooking. Dom can be followed on Instagram at @domgoring
LEG OF LAMB WITH POTATO BOULANGÈRE
1 kg Lamb Bones
A Sprinkle of Peppercorns
1 Leg of Lamb 1.5-2 kg
1.5 kg Potatoes
2 Onions (Optional)
A Handful of Thyme
A Bunch of Wild Garlic
First you need to make a Lamb Stock. If you’re able to get to a butcher ask them if they have any lamb bones available. Alternatively you could ask them to butterfly a lamb leg, which means taking the lamb meat off the bone and you can use the bone from the leg. (Dom ordered his Lamb from Matt Chatfield at Philip Warren Butchers who offer delivery to your door)
Roast or brown the bones in a baking tray at 200ºC for about 35-45 minutes, or until they are looking really brown and almost crispy. Place these, along with the carrot, leek and onion (roughly cut into two or three pieces), bay leaves and peppercorns into a pot of water, which just covers the bones. Bring the pot to a gentle rumble, similar to a slow spewing of magma in a volcano, and leave for at least 2 or 3 hours. Ideally it would be good to leave in an oven or aga overnight on a very low heat to intensify the flavour, but if this isn’t an option 3 hours on the stove should be good.
While the stock is gurgling, enjoy a cup of tea and a read of your book for half an hour or so.
Take the leg of Lamb out of the fridge.
Next wash the potatoes. Peeling is optional. Slice them as thin as you can, but it doesn’t matter if they’re not super thin. A mandolin can help but be extremely careful of fingers!
Once the potatoes are sliced, put them in a bowl and season them generously with salt and pepper. I have a big propensity towards salt so I will add a few shovels worth, but I’m aware others might not enjoy that much salt so season according to your preference. Hopefully by now the 3 hours are up on the stock and it can be drained into a bowl.
This is also the time to decide whether to add onions or not, which again is a personal preference. If you do include them, slice thinly and sweat in a little oil or lamb fat if there is any until they are soft and a little caramelised. Add a pinch of salt when you fry them as this helps break the cell walls of the onion down. Once they are fried, we come onto the layering process.
You will need an ovenproof dish or baking tray 4-5 inches deep, but it depends on how many potatoes you have. Start with a layer of potatoes on the bottom (no need to be neat but you can be if you wish). Once the base is totally covered, add a few of the wild garlic leaves - I just rip them up and scatter over the potatoes. Add the onions and thyme as well, a little at a time. Keep repeating the layers until you have a filled dish. Pour over the lamb stock and place in the oven at 200ºc for an hour until the potatoes are soft and the top will be golden and crispy.
Hopefully your oven will allow you to put a rack over the potatoes so that you can cook the Lamb directly above them. Make a few incisions into the lamb and stuff the garlic cloves into these. Drizzle a little oil over the lamb and season with salt and pepper. Place the lamb on the rack atop the potatoes. The fat and juices will fall into the potatoes making them even more delicious. If the bone is still in the lamb it will take around 1hr 15 mins. If it’s been butterflied 40-45 mins should be good for pink Lamb.
Serve with any seasonal green vegetables you can find, such as Cavolo Nero, Peas, Broccoli, Spring Greens. A Salsa Verde would also go really well.
When thinking about wine pairing, why not enjoy this with our Wiston Estate Rosé 2014? Coming from a warm year and with Pinot Noir dominating the blend, this vintage wine is fuller bodied than most English Sparkling Rosés. With its fresh acidity and spicy, redcurrant notes this will be the perfect accompaniment with Dom’s dish. Enjoy!