- 1 head garlic with fat cloves
Part of the lily, or alium, family, of which onions are also a member, garlic is one of the most…
- 150ml olive oil
Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…
- 5 sprigs thyme
This popular herb grows in Europe, especially the Mediterranean, and is a member of the mint…
- 600g new potato, ideally Jersey Royals
New potatoes have thin, wispy skins and a crisp, waxy texture. They are young potatoes and…
- 2 sprigs mint
There are several types of mint, each with its own subtle difference in flavour and appearance.…
- 2 tbsp caper
Capers are the small flower buds of the Capparis shrub, which grows in the Mediterranean. As…
- 3-4 anchovy fillets, roughly chopped
Silver, slender salty little fish found mainly around the Black Sea and the Pacific and Atlantic…
- 25g pitted black olive, roughly chopped
- small bunch chervil or parsley
Chervil is an annual herb that looks similar to flat leaf parsley but with a finer stem and more…
- 4 rumps of lamb, about 250-300g each
A lamb is a sheep that is under 1 year old; between 1 and 2 years old you will find it sold as…
- 8 sprigs rosemary
Rosemary's intense, fragrant aroma has traditionally been paired with lamb, chicken and game…
First of all confit the garlic. Heat the oven to 190C/fan 170C/ gas 5. Separate and peel the cloves. An easy way to do this is by putting each clove flat on a board, place a large, heavy knife flat on top and smash down with your clenched fist. This loosens the skin. Then trim the root ends.
Heat 4 tbsp olive oil in a small frying pan, cook the garlic until golden brown, then transfer to a small roasting dish, add some salt and 1 sprig of thyme and roast in the oven for about 10 mins until softened. Remove and cool; leave the oven on to roast the meat.
Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Tip in the potatoes and mint and leave to simmer for 15 mins until the potatoes are just tender. Drain and discard the mint. Leave to stand for 10 mins until potatoes are cool enough to handle, then, using a small, sharp knife, peel off the skin.
Return the potatoes to the pan and, using a large fork, roughly crush. Mix in about 3 tbsp olive oil, the capers, chopped anchovies, olives and 3-4 confit garlic cloves. Crush again with the fork. Chop the chervil or parsley and mix in along with some seasoning. Set aside and keep warm.
Trim any excess fat from the top layer of lamb, leaving a little on for cooking. Score the top in a criss-cross using a sharp knife. Season well. Heat a heavy based non-stick pan until very hot, add 2 tbsp of oil, then cook the lamb, fat-side down. Sauté well and turn on all four sides until nicely browned all over (about 4 mins) then remove from pan.
Arrange the remaining thyme and the rosemary in a roasting tray (or into the frying pan if it is ovenproof) to make 4 piles. Place a piece of lamb on top of each one. Roast in the oven for 15-20 mins until cooked to medium, then let the meat rest for 5 mins.
To serve, spoon a portion of potato onto each plate. Arrange the tomatoes, courgettes and beans around it or just a simple salad, if you prefer. Slice the lamb on the diagonal, fan out on top, then drizzle with any meat juices. Top each piece of lamb with some more confit garlic.
Choose the right cutsRumps of lamb are tender and full of flavour. They are found between the top of the loin, or saddle, and the leg. They’re a chef’s favourite, like rib-eye steaks, but you may well have to ask a good butcher to cut them specially.
Make extra garlic confitUse double the ingredients for the garlic confit and store the remainder in the fridge, covered in a layer of olive oil. Can be made up to 10 days ahead and used when you want garlic in a hurry.
Season the right wayFor robust meats like lamb, use rock salt and make sure that you rub plenty into the meat. Try to be generous as much of the salt will disappear into the pan as you cook the meat.