Mediterranean Grilled Lamb Leg with Mint Pesto

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Mediterranean Grilled Lamb Leg with Mint Pesto

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Mediterranean Grilled Lamb Leg with Mint Pesto

June 5, 2017 | Updated: February 18, 2019 |

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Mediterranean Grilled Lamb Leg with Mint Pesto

The perfect Mediterranean summer feast: Garlic-herb marinated grilled lamb with mint pesto…Plus, favorite Mediterranean sides and salads to serve along!

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We’re hanging out in the Eastern Mediterranean today where I get my love of lamb from…and where, before there was chicken, lamb had been the meat of choice.

I’ve talked quite a bit about lamb already. From Easter and , to my “fancy” date-night dinner, .

And there is, of course, summer favorites like and !

Mediterranean Grilled Lamb Leg with Mint Pesto

I use sustainably-raised American lamb, which is generally more meaty and sweeter in flavor than imported lamb. It’s also fresher, having traveled up to 10,000 fewer miles and about 30 days less than imported lamb!

This time it’s a big Mediterranean summer feast with grilled lamb leg!

It seemed a bit outside my comfort zone, but this grilled lamb leg recipe is fairly simple. The secret is in using leg of lamb that’s been de-boned and then butterflied.

You can start with a packaged American-raised boneless leg of lamb, but just ask your butcher to trim and “butterfly” it for you. What he will essentially do is open the lamb up and cut down through sinew and any chunky parts, to give an even thickness. The result is a beautifully flat hunk of lamb, perfect for grilling!

To ensure tender, succulent grilled lamb, I did two more things. Using my meat tenderizer or mallet, I quickly pounded down the lamb leg. Then, the lamb leg took on a flavor-packed Mediterranean marinade with garlic, fresh herbs, and a few favorite spices.

Mediterranean Grilled Lamb Leg with Mint Pesto

If you have the time, marinate overnight, otherwise for two hours or so in the fridge.

What to Serve with Grilled Lamb

Two sauces I love to serve with this grilled lamb, mint pesto and . Then, simply grilled vegetables like zucchini, tomato and sweet onions. Before grilling, season the veggies to your liking and toss in good extra virgin olive oil.

Wanna go the extra mile and turn this grilled lamb meal into a feast? Here are a few ideas:

; ; or easy . And, of course, some warm pita bread!

Mediterranean Grilled Lamb Leg with Mint Pesto

Mediterranean Grilled Lamb Leg with Mint Pesto

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The perfect Mediterranean summer feast: Garlic-herb marinated grilled lamb with mint pesto…Plus, favorite Mediterranean sides and salads to serve along!

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- 1/2 cup packed fresh mint leaves

Mediterranean Grilled Lamb Leg with Mint Pesto

- 1 boneless and butterflied leg of lamb

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- Make the marinade. In the bowl of a food processor, add the parsley, mint, onion garlic, spices, lemon juice and olive oil. Run processor until you have a smooth green marinade.

- Pound lamb. Place the lamb leg on a large cutting board, cover with heavy plastic wrap. Using the smooth side of a meat tenderizer or mallet like pound lamb and make sure to even out any pieces that are too thick. But remember, the goal is NOT to achieve paper-thin lamb.

- Pat the lamb leg dry and sprinkle generously with salt on both sides. Place lamb in a large freezer bag and spread the marinade all over it. Zip the bag closed and work the marinade into the lamb to make sure every part of the lamb is well coated. Refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight.

Mediterranean Grilled Lamb Leg with Mint Pesto

- Remove lamb from fridge and let sit in room temperature for 20 minutes.

- Heat an outdoor gas grill on high on all burners .

- Place lamb, fat-side down, on the hot grill. Sear 2 minutes or so, then turn over and sear on the other side for 2 minutes. Lower the heat to low . Cover and grill for 15 minutes or so, flipping once midway through, until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the lamb reads 130 degrees F .

- Remove from grill onto a cutting board. Cover with foil and let rest about 5 minutes. If using skewers, remove them, and cut across the grain and place on a serving platter.

- To make the mint pesto , simply add all the ingredients into the bowl of a clean food processor or blender. Blend until smooth. Top the grilled lamb with some of the pesto and transfer the rest of the pesto to a small serving bowl.

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