There’s no particular reason for that obscure reference to Easter Everywhere, the second album by cult favorite 1960s band The 13th Floor Elevators other than the fact that it mentions Easter and today’s recipe is for Pressure Cooker Leg of Lamb, in my famous just barely in time for the holiday fashion (but it’s good for any time). It is a dang good album, though. Give it a listen if you are a fan of Psychedelic Music.
Now back to food-related matters. I was tempted to call it Leg o’ Lamb, but then I would hate myself because I get annoyed at such things as replacing the word “of” with “o’”, and don’t even get me started on “fixin’s”. So Pressure Cooker Leg of Lamb (With Yogurt Sauce) it is.
I am going to include separate recipes for the yogurt sauce and the lamb just to simplify things a bit, even though the sauce isn’t a pressure cooker recipe.
It’s best to make the sauce first so you can pop it in the fridge to let the flavors blend while you work on the lamb.
I used a boneless leg of lamb, since the bone-in ones at the store didn’t look like they would fit in my pressure cooker.
The lamb I used was 3-1/2 lbs., so the time will need to be adjusted some if you have a larger or smaller piece of lamb.
It was nice of the store to include the decorative and photogenic bit of rosemary in the package.
Boneless lamb usually comes already dressed in one of these sexy fishnet numbers. If yours does not you will have to tie yours up S&M style. Before you get out the leather straps and handcuffs, S&M stands for String and Meat (OK, I just made that up, but really, if your lamb doesn’t have netting, roll it up and fasten with butcher twine.
So first, let’s do the sauce. It would probably work with low-fat yogurt, but I used full-fat Greek Yogurt, because let’s face it, it tastes so much better (and it doesn’t include those weird gums and whatnot that are used to make the lowfat ones thicker). Also, I haven’t tried this with dried herbs, it would probably work, but would take away the nice, fresh flavor that comes from using fresh herbs, so use dried only as a last resort.
Use fresh lemon as well.
Finely chop the dill and mint, zest the lemon (I never used to use zest until I got one of these Microplane gizmos, now I’m a zesting fool) and mix it together with a cup of yogurt. Add a little salt and white pepper, too.
You could whisk it if you don’t have an immersion blender, but I mixed it up with the Bamix. It blends the flavor a little better, and gives it a nice greenish color.
I put it in one of the these sqeezie deals so I could make cool squiggles on the lamb, but you could just put ot in a bowl and plop it on old school.
Once that is all mixed, stick it in the fridge to get it out of the way, clear away the sauce ingredients and work on that lamb which has been taken out of the fridge befor you made the sauce, right?
I used a “wet” rub, which could also be used as a marinade if you have the forethought to do it ahead of time and let it marinate in the fridge for a few hours, which unfortunantely I did not.
In a bowl or measuring cup, add 1 cup olive oil, a heaping tablespoon Herbes de Provence (I use this spice blend so often that I buy the jumbo bag, so I don’t need to see my Herbes dealer as often), a tablespoon of dijon mustard, juice of a lemon and some white pepper. I add some salt slightly later. I used the Bamix to blend this mixture as well (even though I have been lusting after a Vitamix, I have found the Bamix to be one of the most useful things I have ever purchased).
Once you’ve got the rub all blended, go to town on that lamb. Rub that baby all over, bottom and top. make sure you have the lamb sitting on a large platter or something with sides that isn’t going to make a big mess (I should have followed my own advice).
Let the lamb be for a minute while you put a tablespoon or so of vegetable oil in the pressure cooker over medium-high heat. When the oil gets hot, put the lamb in the cooker and brown on all sides.
After the lamb is browned, remove it to a platter and sauté the onion in the pot.
When the onions are translucent, add wine, Worcestershire sauce, and the spice bag (or cheesecloth packet) with the bay leaf, peppercorns and cardamom pods (cracked first).
Add salt and pepper to your liking at this point.
Turn heat to high and add the lamb back to the pot.
You know the drill, put the top on the pressure cooker and bring to high pressure.
When high pressure is reached, set timer for 35 minutes (This will result in lamb ranging from rare to medium depending what part of meat it is cut from. If you don’t like it so pink, try 45 minutes. you can always bring it back up to pressure for a few more minutes if it is not to your liking). Temperature should be 135-140 for medium-rare. Around 160 if you don’t want pink.
Let the pressure come down naturally, remove lid, put lamb on platter and tent with foil. Let the meat rest for 15 minutes.
Remove the netting, slice the meat, plate it and top with the Dill Mint Yogurt sauce.
Check out those cool squiggles that I mentioned earlier!
I leaned a little to the Mediterranean side of things with this, serving it with some Turmeric-Cardommom rice and a tomato-cucumber salad. You could easily serve it with more traditional Easter sides like mashed or boiled potatoes and a green vegetable of some sort.
Give it a try, it’s pretty lamb good!
|Dill-Mint Yogurt Sauce||
- 1 cup yogurt
- 1 Lemon, zest and juice
- 2 tablespoons dill, chopped
- 2 tablespoons mint, chopped
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Dash of salt and white pepper
- Combine ingredients
- Whisk or blend with immersion blender
- Put in squeeze bottle, or cover in bowl and let flavors blend in refrigerator until ready to use.
|Pressure Cooker Leg Of Lamb||
- ½ cup olive oil
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
- 1 (generous) tablespoon Herbes de Provence
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- ½ teaspoon white pepper
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1-1/2 cups white wine, such as Chardonnay
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce
- 2 bay leaves
- 6 peppercorns
- 6 cardamom pods, cracked
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Mix together first six ingredients (Olive Oil through the ½ teaspoon white pepper) using whisk or immersion blender
- Heat oil over medium-high heat in pressure cooker
- Brown Lamb on all sides
- Remove Lamb to platter
- Saute onion in pressure cooker pot
- When onion is translucent, add wine and Worcestershire Sauce
- Put bay leaves, peppercorns and cardamom pods in a spice bag or wrap in cheesecloth
- Add spice bag to wine mixture in pot
- Turn heat to high and place the lamb back in the pot
- Add any rub that may have dripped onto platter into pot
- Add a little salt and pepper
- Turn heat to high, cover pressure cooker and bring to high pressure
- Lower heat to maintain high pressure and set timer for 35 minutes (45 minutes if you like it a little less pink)
- When timer sounds, let pressure come down on its own
- Check temperature in several spots (it should be 135-140 for rare-medium rare). If necessary bring back up to pressure for 5 minutes or so.
- Add salt and pepper to taste
- Remove to platter, tent with foil and let rest for 15 minutes.
- Serve with Dill-Mint Yogurt Sauce