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Roast leg of lamb with chestnuts

  • 1 hour and 40 minutes
  • Easy
  • Second Courses
The combination of spices, chestnuts and Marsala bring out the natural flavors of the lamb.

Ingredients: Per 4 servings

  • 2 lb leg of lamb
  • ½ lb chestnuts
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 1 onion
  • 2 oz butter
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 sprig rosemary
  • 1 cup Rum, mixed with Marsala wine
  • 2 ½ tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon sugar


Wash the lamb leg and dry with paper towels.

Place the lamb in a baking dish and season with olive oil, salt, pepper, rosemary, garlic and butter, cut into pieces.

Peel the carrots and cut into rounds. Arrange them around the meat. Also add sliced onion and celery.

Roast in a 350° F oven for 1 hour, turning the lamb often so that it doesn’t dry out.

When done cooking, pass the cooking liquids through a sieve or chinois.

Remove the chestnuts from their shells. Place a pot of water over high heat. Add a pinch of salt and sugar to the water. As soon as the water comes to a boil, add the chestnuts and cook for 30 minutes or until almost tender. Then drain, and let cool.

Peel off the skin.

Add the chestnuts to the lamb roast. Place the roasting dish back in a 350° F oven and cook for another 10 minutes, basting the meat with the mixed Rum and Marsala.

Then, remove from the oven and serve hot, plating sliced lamb leg with the chestnuts and the cooking juices.

Chef's tips

To make sure that the lamb doesn’t dry out, be sure not to cook it for to long and to keep it moist during cooking. Try covering the baking dish with aluminum foil and check to make sure that the surface isn’t to brown.

Food History

People have been eating lamb since ancient times. Often served as a roast, lamb pairs well with the typical spices of the Mediterranean, such as mint, garlic and rosemary, however it is also delicious served with rice and dried fruit. Succulent and flavorful, lamb is traditionally served at Passover and Easter, as it is both a symbol of both the Jewish and Christian religions.