A roast of any kind always makes a great table centrepiece, whether it is dressed to impress or straight out of the oven without a care in the world.
This Arabic lamb and rice dish is simply perfect for an Eid Party.
For the lamb
1 leg of lamb 1 large spoon of salt 1 tea spoon of cinnamon 1 tea spoon of black pepper 1 tea spoon of white pepper 1 tea spoon of nutmeg 1 tea spoon of cardamon 2 bay Leaves 1 cinnamon stick 4 large spoons of honey 4 glasses of water
* In a very deep baking tray place the leg of lamb and rub with salt * In a small bowl mix all the spices – cinnamon, pepper, white pepper, nutmeg and cardamon – and sprinkle on the lamb * Add the bay leaves, the cinnamon sticks, honey and leave to marinate for couple of hours in the fridge * Four hours before you need to serve, add the water and cover the tray with foil * Roast the leg in a preheated fan oven, at 220 degrees, for an hour and a half * Remove the tray from the oven and turn the leg to the other side, cover with foil and leave in the oven for another 2 hours at a reduced temperature, 180 degrees * Check the water level every half an hour and if necessary add hot water * Once ready leave to rest for 10 minutes, then remove the meat from the bone and shred into small pieces * Serve hot on a bed of rice with nuts — the recipe for this is below * Garnish with another sprinkle of nuts on top * Keep the sauce and use it as gravy
For the rice
500g of basmati rice 100g of pistachio nuts 100g cashew nuts 100g of pine kernels 100g of almonds 1 large spoon of vegetable oil to fry the nuts 1 large onion peeled and diced 1 tea spoon of cinnamon 1 tea spoon of black pepper 1 tea spoon white pepper 1 tea spoon of nutmeg 1/2 tea spoon of cardamon 1 tea spoon salt 2 glasses of water
* Wash and soak the rice in hot water for half an hour * Meanwhile in a large non-stick pot, heat the vegetable oil and fry the nuts separately until golden * Start with the pine nuts, followed by the almonds, then the pistachios * Remove the nuts from the pan and let them cool down *Drain the rice and add to the fried onion, sprinkle all the spices, half of the nuts, salt and the fresh water * Stir the rice and keep at a high temperature until the water starts to boil, then reduce the temperature to the minimum * Cover the pan with the lid and leave to simmer for 12 minutes * Serve the rice hot and garnish with the rest of the nuts.