One of my favorite holiday recipes is Spanish Christmas lamb. Read on for how to prepare this delicious main dish.
Depending on where you live in Spain, Christmas dinner can mean different things (from cold shellfish to hot turkey!), but I think one of the most elegant and delicious Christmas dishes in Spain is this simple roasted lamb recipe.
The key to any Spanish roasted lamb recipe is to go low and slow — we roast things for a long time here, and enjoy tender and fragrant meat as a result! This Spanish Christmas lamb recipe is quite simple, but packs a lot of flavors and is accompanied by perfectly seasoned potatoes and onions. Plan ahead to make sure you marinate the meat overnight — it really does make a difference!
See also: 11 Mouthwatering Spanish Christmas Recipes
Spanish Christmas Lamb Recipe
Spanish Christmas Lamb Recipe - Slow Roasted Lamb with Potatoes and Onions (Cordero con Patatas y Cebolla)
- One 4 pound leg of lamb (1.8 kilos)
- 2 large sweet onions
- 6 medium potatoes Yukon Gold are my favorite here
- Olive oil for frying the potatoes and onions
- For the Marinade
- 1/4 cup olive oil (60 ml)
- 1/2 cup dry white wine (120 ml)
- Lemon juice from 1/2 a lemon freshly squeezed
- One tablespoon white wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons coarse salt
- Black pepper 1/2-1 tablespoon, depending on preference
- A couple of sprigs of thyme crushed
- 4 bay leaves crushed
- 8 cloves of garlic ground to a paste
- Prepare the marinade: Mix together the salt, pepper, olive oil, lemon juice, white wine, vinegar, garlic paste, thyme and bay leaves.
- Spread the marinade all over the meat and wrap in plastic wrap. Marinate overnight, making sure every part of the lamb is covered in the marinade.
- The next day, take the lamb out of the refrigerator at least one hour before putting in the oven.
- Peel the potatoes and dice them in medium sized cubes. Pan fry them in olive oil, remove with a slotted spoon, and reserve.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C).
- While the oven is pre-heating, dice the onion julienne style (in thin strips) and cook in the same olive oil until translucent and soft (8-10 minutes). Remove with a slotted spoon.
- On a large baking sheet, spread the potatoes and onions in a layer on the bottom. Lightly season with salt and pepper. Put the marinated lamb on top.
- Cover with foil and roast for 3.5 hours. Check on the lamb and cook for an additional 30 minutes if not tender enough.
- At this point, remove the foil and raise the oven temperature to 425°F (220°C). Roast for 20 minutes uncovered, turning halfway through to achieve a golden brown on each side of the lamb. Move the potatoes and onions if necessary to prevent over-browning.
- Remove the lamb from the oven and rest at least 20 minutes before carving.
What do you eat for Christmas dinner? Would you give this Spanish Christmas lamb a try?
We’re planning on making this for Christmas Eve this year. How many pounds of lamb would you recommend for 8 adults and 5 kids?
Also, would lamb shoulder work as well, or would you recommend sticking to leg of lamb?
Hi, would this work if you just started the potatoes and onions raw with the lamb, rather than pre-cooked them?
Superb, I meant chorizo. apologies. Too much Sidra
Many thanks for the Spanish recipes. I will be cooking this lamb recipe for Xmas. Sounds superb. My forte is authentic Fabada. I always use scrumpy cider and proper Morthia, Choriso.
Love Spanish lamb and thanks for putting temperatures in centigrade but….. could you also give temperature for conventional (i guess this is what is on already) and for fan assisted ovens. It makes a huge difference.
CN I use a boneless leg of lamb? I prefer bone in but cannot always find it.
Yes, no problem.
We love this recipe and have already made it several times. We did reduce the salt as we found it a bit much. The meat is so tender and beautiful and the slow cooked potatoes and onions are fantastic too. I’m a follower of your emails, many great recipes but so far this is our favourite.
I live in Alicante, Spain (Scottish) and I love slow cooked Cordero. Came across your website yesterday and followed your instructions but added rosemary red wine. Only 2 of us and we ate the lot. Thank you so much. Will definitely be following you. I have taken photos to show my daughter in the U.K.
Fantastic! So happy you enjoyed it!
Good recipe but find it strange that you do not use Centigrade for oven tempratures which is the system used in Spain. Having to convert each time is a bother, so how about both for those of us who use European measurments.
Great suggestion, I began the site writing for a mainly US audience but as it’s grown I have the goal to convert all measurements and temps to both metric and US! Working on it 🙂
Fantastic recipe. I tweaked (5 hours) the cooking time and reduced the oven temp to 16oc as I was using whole leg of mutton.
I love Spanish Christmas lamb.