- 5 T extra virgin olive oil
- 2 T coarse salt
- 2 T cracked black pepper
- 900 g–1 kg bone-in free-range leg of lamb
- 30 g fresh rosemary
- 300 g baby onions, peeled and halved
- 1 T paprika
- 20 g Woolworths steak rub
- 1 head garlic, halved horizontally
- 100 g tomato paste
- 1 t brown sugar
1. Heat a large saucepan until extremely hot and add the olive oil. Rub the salt and pepper all over the lamb and gently place it into the pan. Seal it on all sides, or brown the meat, getting the skin as caramelised as you’d like.
2. Add half the rosemary and half the onions and cook until the edges start to burn. Season the lamb with the paprika and top with enough water to cover the lamb.
3. Reduce the heat to medium, cover and simmer for 2½ hours. Remove the lid and try to break off a piece of lamb using a fork. If the lamb breaks away easily, it’s ready. Add the remaining onions and allow the remaining cooking liquid to reduce until the lamb is left to crisp up in the remaining fat.
4. Add 2 cups of water to deglaze the pan and stir in the tomato paste and sugar. Simmer for 5 minutes, then remove from heat. Carefully place the lamb on a serving platter and spoon over the onions and sauce. Serve immediately.
Cook's note: An important thing I learned from my gran was to always have a plan B. On big cooking days, her small oven would be overrun with roasting the chicken, keeping the fish warm, baking scones and bread, broiling potatoes… so this scrumptious recipe utilises the stovetop beyond its wildest potential.
Photograph: Toby Murphy