Monday, April 19, 2010

Recipe: Lamb, Basil & Garlic Roll-Up

When I first set out to teach myself to cook, one of the first things I did was familiarise myself with the various cuts of meat readily available at the local butcher. Whilst that variety has diminished somewhat since switching to organic, grass-fed meats, I still have access to one of my favourites - lamb backstrap. And yet, since going primal, I haven't made one of my absolute gems and I really don't know why, since it is primal, or paleo if you take out the small amount of dairy (after cooking, since it helps the meat take up the herb flavours). So I present to you:

Lamb, Basil & Garlic Roll-Up


Per person:

1 lamb backstrap (approx 175g raw)
3 cherry bocconcini or 1 normal bocconcini (or sliced mozzarella)
1t finely chopped or minced basil
1t finely chopped or minced garlic

You will also need a kitchen tie for each backstrap - I have some nifty silicon ones that are perfect.


Lie the backstraps out flat on a flat, clean surface.

Slice the bocconcini finely.

Spread the basil and garlic thinly across the top of the backstrap, then create a layer of bocconcini slices atop the seasoning.

Carefully roll up the backstrap, and secure with a kitchen tie. This is tricky if your backstrap is narrow - roll tightly, keeping the bocconcini centred as you go so that it doesn't end up squeezed out of the roll-up.

Place the roll-ups on an ungreased baking tray, join-side down.

Roast on low (120degC) for 45 minutes. You can get away with cooking this a bit faster, but the slower and lower you roast it, the more tender the backstrap will be and the better the flavours will develop.

Remove kitchen tie, and served rolled-up. If any bocconcini slithered away during cooking, scoop it up and serve as an amazing gravy!

If you're going dairy-free paleo and you're just cooking for yourself or other lacto-phobes, scrap the cheese and cook slower, lower, and perhaps even covered.

I'm definitely putting this one back into regular rotation!


Sandy said...

Well, *I* think that lamb looks AMAZING. But what's a lamb backstrap? Is that an Aussie term I don't know, or have I just never actually seen that cut of meat?

StephenB said...

Hi Sandy. When I learned to butcher a deer, the backstrap was pointed out to me as the prize meet. It is the long somewhat cylindrical muscles that are parallel to the backbone.

I *think* that you get some of this meat from a lamb chop, but the cut is perpendicular to the backbone.

Anonymous said...

Looks absolutely amazing!!!!

Ren said...

Looks amazing! I don't think I've ever seen lamb backstrap for sale here, though I can sometimes get the same cut of venison.

Nice job!

Donald said...

That looks EPIC! I'll be looking for those silicone bands tomorrow too. Keep up the awesome work.