Excellent Roasted Lamb and Potatoes, Roman Style is a favorite in Rome especially at Easter. Properly, it is called "Abbacchio al Forno con Patate", an excellent, easy recipe that requires very few ingredients but delivers a robust aroma and flavor.
Song of the day: Best Day Of My Life - American Authors
A perfect celebratory dish!
Wow, I can't believe Easter is just a few days away. Seems like this past year is moving so quickly. However, always nice to have these breaks to celebrate even though it is the way it is right now. This Excellent Roasted Lamb and Potatoes, Roman Style is just the dish that would present beautifully and aromatically on your family's Easter table!
Italian traditions run deep!
Growing up Italian was such a rich and fulfilling experience. What I can say for sure is that it made both of us pretty passionate foodies, with a deep respect for traditional dishes and ingredients. Easter is upon us and in true Italian fashion we are sharing a dish that is a classic in Nicoletta's family in Rome at Easter lunch, and one that we have come to appreciate also here in Canada.
Come with us today while we share a comforting, rustic, truly Italian dish we call Excellent Roasted Lamb and Potatoes, Roman Style!
What you will need
- lamb (ribs, chops, morsels, chopped shanks, etc)
- red or yellow potatoes
- extra virgin olive oil
- white wine
- fresh rosemary
- bay leaves
- salt and pepper
- water and lemon for the brine
A few good tips before the oven:
Actually, we called Nicoletta's mom and dad before getting into this recipe. We wanted to make sure that we had the process right. Always nice to have those connections in Italy and Nicoletta has a plethora of friends and family to pull from. Furthermore, we are going to share these tips with you today!
Firstly, the lamb goes into a brine of cold water and lemon wedges. This subdues the gaminess of this type of meat. Usually brine overnight, but really a couple of hours will do you.
Secondly, our next step is to marinate the meat and potatoes in olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper, rosemary, and bay leaf, with just a splash of white wine. I toss this really well and then cover and place in the fridge. The potatoes, as you can see in the picture, were halved. This is the perfect size for the cooking time of the lamb, likewise your potatoes will be perfectly cooked.
One thing to remember is to pat dry the lamb after taking it out of the brine, more so it will aid the marinade to really infuse into the meat. Another thing is, I cut the ribs into singles, it presents better and also helps in getting that nice crispness on the edges, more so the caramelization that happens!
Time to roast:
Thirdly, I pre-heat the oven to 400° F. In go the lamb and potatoes. As far as time, I set the timer for 20 minutes. When the timer rings, I take the lamb out, give it a turn, and pour some more white wine in. This is really going to preserve the moisture, and furthermore it will intensify the flavor of the lamb and potatoes ten fold! Back into the oven for another 20 minutes.
Loving the aroma!
I absolutely love the aroma of this rustic Excellent Roasted Lamb and Potatoes, Roman Style. The rosemary, bay leaf, the earthiness of the lamb, and likewise, the caramelization of the potatoes. It is just heavenly and boy are we getting hungry!
10 more minutes to go!
The last thing is to turn the oven down to 350° F in the last minutes of roasting. Then out of the oven it comes, to rest for 10 minutes, so all those juices can come back into the layers of the lamb!
A thing of sheer beauty!
Take a look at the color on this Excellent Roasted Lamb and Potatoes, Roman Style, wonderful golden brown caramelized edges and surface. The potatoes have that lovely rim around the edges and the char on top, more so, this tells me it is going to be so so good! Can't wait! Plating time and best of all, Mangia, Mangia!
A Family-style dinner!
I love plating and presenting like this, family-style. I can hear the chatter of conversation, the clanging of dishes and utensils, heated discussions, and more so, that feeling of being where you belong, in all that love. This is what Easter brings, life!
Excellent Roasted Lamb and Potatoes, with wonderful cicoria. How Roman is that?!
When I see this picture it just fills our hearts with warm and wonderful memories. For me it is of my father Americo. He was a master at cooking lamb. The flavor of that meat makes me just drool thinking about it and he would always grab the boney pieces as he said they had the most flavor.
For Nicoletta it is of her family and Easter lunch. Lots of food on the table surrounded by family and laughter.
Today we are serving this dish with a wonderful side. It is a staple in our home here or in Italy. Sautéed chicory (dandelion) greens, cicoria, something you often see on a Roman table. I adore this green and it just makes the lamb and potatoes pop with that vibrant deep green color! Furthermore, that unmistakable taste and texture. There is nothing like it. And don't forget the bread!
I wish I could just pass you some of this Excellent Roasted Lamb and Potatoes, Roman Style. The lamb is juicy, tender, and has those crispy bits that scream tasty! The potatoes are perfect, so soft inside and all you can hear is this crunch as you break the surface. The wine, rosemary, garlic, bay leaves add such a depth to the whole, and have my tastebuds chanting more, more! The cicoria and bread are perfect flavor and texture combinations and I can't resist dipping my bread into some of that pan juice. Mmmmmmmm, so yummy!
Happy Easter everyone!
It has been tough and I know people are having a hard time, but let's take some time to enjoy our lives. We may not be able to be together, however why not do a skype or zoom meal together. I know you are all resourceful. I sure hope you try this wonderful meal, it is a dream come true!
Buon Appetito e Buona Pasqua!Print
Lamb and potatoes:
- 6 rib rack of lamb
- 3-4 lamb chops
- 3 garlic cloves, smashed
- 2-3 sprigs of rosemary
- 3 Tbsp evo oil
- ½ cup white wine, divided
- 2 bay leaves
- salt and pepper
- 7 medium size red skin potatoes
- 1 lemon, cut into wedges, for the brine
Chicory (dandelion, cicoria):
- 1 bundle of dandelion or cicoria
- 2-3 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 clove garlic
- pinch of red chili flakes
- dash of salt and pepper
- First of all take your lamb and place it in a bowl of cold water and lemon. Make sure meat is submerged in the water. Cover and place in the fridge for 2 hours or overnight.
- Drain lamb from the brine and pat dry. Cut the rack of ribs into individual pieces and place in a large roasting pan with the lamb chops.
- Take the potatoes, peel, wash, and cut in half lengthwise. Place in roasting pan with the lamb
- Drizzle a good amount of extra virgin olive oil over the lamb and potatoes. Season with salt and pepper and toss. Turn lamb over and season again with salt and pepper. Splash some white wine in.
- Add a couple of sprigs of fresh rosemary and 2 bay leaves, and brush the lamb and potatoes with it, then place it in the pan. Cover and place in fridge for an hour.
- Pre-heat the oven to 400° degrees F. Place pan in middle rack uncovered and roast for 20 minutes.
- Take out of the oven, turn lamb and potatoes, add about another ¼ cup of white wine and place back in oven for another 20 minutes. For the final 10 minutes turn heat down to 350° F. Take out of the oven and let rest for 10 minutes. Ready to plate.
- Wash, trim and blanch chicory in a lar pot of boiling water for 10 minutes.
- Drain and squeeze excess water when it cools.
- In a medium sauté pan, drizzle in olive oil, place in garlic after you squishes it a bit, and also the red chili flakes. Swish that around and turn on heat to medium.
- Toss in cicoria and break it up Season with salt and pepper and cook for 10 minutes. Take off stove and plate.
For the lamb you could use lamb chops, rack of lamb, a variety of cut lamb pieces, or lamb shank cut. Try and find a nice lamb with plenty of marbling and fat.
Yellow or red potatoes work well.
You can brine for a few hours and marinate overnight too, if that works best for you.
As for a side, wilted greens like spinach, kale, work well, but also a nice salad would work too.
Remember you need time for brining and marinating, it is not included in the preparation time.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 50 minutes
- Category: Main/side
- Method: Oven
- Cuisine: Italian
Keywords: Roasted lamb, roasted potatoes, rosemary, white wine, garlic, bay leaves, Chicory, Family-style, Easter lunch, italian, rome
When I am not cooking, I enjoy playing musical instruments, singing, writing. I have learned over the years to live in gratitude and enjoy the moment.