Honey and horopito lamb with watercress and walnut salad
( SERVES 8 )
Photo by Annabel Langbein Media
Horopito is a native New Zealand shrub with peppery leaves. It is available dried online and from specialty food stores. If you have access to a horopito plant (also known as Pseudowintera colorata, New Zealand peppertree, winter's bark and red horopito), add a few finely chopped leaves into the marinade for a spicy, peppery taste. If not, a little oregano mixed with black pepper does the trick.
|3 Tbsp||Dried ground horopito, or use 2 Tbsp dried oregano mixed with 1 Tbsp ground black pepper|
|2 Tbsp||Runny honey|
|2 Tbsp||Extra virgin olive oil|
|6||Garlic cloves, crushed|
|2||Lemons, use the finely grated zest and half a cup of lemon juice|
Orange currant dressing and salad
- To make the marinade, combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Divide the lamb into 5 or 6 pieces by cutting along the seams between the muscle groups. Place in the marinade, turn to coat evenly, cover and chill for at least 4 hours or overnight.
- To make the dressing, combine currants, orange zest and orange juice in a small jar and allow to stand for at least 15 minutes. Add garlic and salt paste, oil and lemon juice along with ground pepper to taste. Shake to combine. The dressing can be prepared up to 2 days in advance and chilled until needed.
- When ready to cook the lamb, preheat oven to 220C fanbake. Heat a little oil in a large, heavy-based frypan with an ovenproof handle. Lift lamb out of marinade, reserving marinade, season lamb with salt and sear over high heat until well browned (2-3 minutes each side), working in batches if necessary.
- Add reserved marinade and roast until done to your liking (6-10 minutes for medium-rare, depending on size). Test doneness by squeezing the thickest part - lots of give means rare and the firmer it is, the more well done.
- Transfer to a plate, cover with baking paper and a teatowel and rest for 10-15 minutes. Slice thinly across the grain to serve. While lamb is resting, arrange watercress on a large platter and scatter with half the feta and walnuts. Add dressing and toss gently to combine. Top with thinly sliced lamb, then scatter with the remaining feta and walnuts to serve.
More recipes to celebrate Matariki
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