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Grilled Leg of Lamb with Feta and Herb Salsa

In this spin on the classic pairing of lamb and mint, the butterflied leg of lamb is rubbed with a garlicky, spicy mint pesto, which is also used to flavor a feta-herb salsa. The salsa makes a fantastic sandwich spread for any leftovers.

Prep Time

    •    Prep time: 45 minutes
    •    Cook time: 1 hour
    •    Yield: Serves 8


    •    1 1/2 cups mint leaves
    •    1 1/2 cups flat-leaf parsley leaves
    •    6 garlic cloves, thickly sliced
    •    3/4 tsp crushed red pepper
    •    3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
    •    1/4 cup plus 2 tbsps freshly grated Parmesan cheese
    •    1/2 tsp grated lemon zest
    •    Salt and freshly ground pepper
    •    One 5 1/2- to 6-pound butterflied leg of lamb
    •    1 pound feta cheese, preferably French, crumbled (4 cups)


  1. In a food processor, pulse the mint with the parsley, garlic and crushed red pepper until finely chopped. Add 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and process to a coarse paste. Add the Parmesan and lemon zest and pulse to combine. Season with salt and pepper.

  2. Spread the lamb on a cutting board and, using a paring knife, poke the meat all over on both sides. Using your fingers, work 1/3 cup of the mint pesto into the slashes and crevices. Season the lamb generously with salt and pepper and transfer to a roasting pan. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

  3. Meanwhile, transfer the remaining mint pesto to a bowl and stir in the feta and remaining 1/2 cup of olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and refrigerate.

  4. Light a grill. Bring the marinated lamb to room temperature, about 1 hour, then brush it all over with olive oil. Season generously with salt and pepper and grill the lamb over a medium-high fire, turning occasionally, for about 20 minutes, or until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part registers 125° (150° in the thinnest part). Transfer the lamb to a cutting board and let it rest for 10 minutes. Thinly slice the lamb and serve with the feta salsa.

This great family recipe is thanks to Food & Wine Recipes at


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