Suckling Lamb “Spanish Style” (Cordero Asado)

In our series of Spanish recipes in accordance with the mediterranean diet we recommend trying the classic Cordero Asado recipe: a delicious traditional and iconic recipe.

Cordero Asado or Spanish Style Suckling Lamb is very popular in Spanish cuisine. In many cases the tradition of roasting lamb historically comes from Al-Ándalus gastronomy. 
Nowadays it is considered a festivities meal. 

 

Prep Time Cook Time
15 mins   2 hours
 

Ingredients

  • 1 Whole Lamb (have butcher cut lamb into quarters, crack all joints, and, if using, split head in half)
  • 80 ml. 100% Arbequina Olive Oil
  • 3 heads garlic, separated into cloves and peeled
  • 12 cups fresh rosemary leaves
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2kg. small potatoes
  • 2 cups dry white wine

Instructions

Preheat oven to 375°. Rinse lamb under running water, taking special care with head. Pat dry. Trim any excess fat, leaving a very thin layer to protect meat while cooking. Rub lamb lightly with 2 tbsp. of the oil.

Using a paring knife, make small incisions all over lamb. Cut about half of the garlic into thick slices and slip into the incisions with about half of the rosemary. Season lamb all over with salt. Sprinkle a little garlic, rosemary, salt, and pepper on head, cover brain with aluminium foil, and set aside.

Place lamb, bone side down, in a large roasting pan, leaving plenty of room for potatoes and head, both to be added later. Slightly crush remaining garlic, scatter over lamb, and roast for 45 minutes.

Place head, cut side up, in roasting pan. Quarter potatoes, toss with remaining rosemary and oil, and scatter around lamb, stirring to coat with pan juices. Pour wine over lamb and continue roasting, basting with pan juices, until meat is firm (it is traditionally served well-done), about another 45 minutes.

Remove lamb from oven, transfer to platter, and allow to rest for 20 minutes. Return potatoes and head to oven and cook until potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes. To serve, cut lamb at joints. Discard foil and add head to platter. Moisten meat with pan juices, adjust seasoning, and serve with potatoes.