Spasifik Issue No.22 Sept/Oct 2007

Going in Time
Memories of his school days in Nelson flood back as JOE LAM cooks up an old Sunday roast lamb classic, with the spuds but minus the taro

When I first came to New Zealand more than 20 years ago, I landed in Auckland, stayed one night with some distant but very kind relatives then boarded another plane the next morning. I was whisked off to Nelson for the duration of my college years. That was my introduction to New Zealand.

I could not think of any place more Kiwi than Nelson (at the time). Then again, it was only my first day. I remember thinking to myself "why Nelson?" I used to say to my Dad that I wanted to be amongst the true Kiwis if and when I came to New Zealand, right in the middle of it all. Although Nelson is the geographical center of New Zealand I had to inform my father that it was not what I meant.

Of all things Kiwi, Nelson was the place where I discovered a Kiwi classic, "The Sunday Roast" Leg of lamb, potatoes, peas, gravy and the ever present mint sauce. I remember thinking "all I need now is Taro". Years later I tried it with Taro; it was just not the same. You can't blame the island boy for trying though. So when we have our roast at home, it always reminds me of those days in the middle of New Zealand.
This is my version of a kiwi classic so to speak. Going baa…ack in time. You will need about 3 cups of your mashed potatoes for this dish. (If you cant make mashed potato OMG!!!!!)




4 150-170gm lamb rumps

3 cloves of garlic crushed

1 stem of rosemary finely chopped

2 tablespoon of good olive oil

2 tablespoon of mint jelly

4 cups of liquid beef stock

2 cups of green peas

Rind of half a lemon


1. Combine the lamb with the garlic, rosemary, lemon and the oil to marinate for about an hour or so in the refrigerator.
2. Preheat your oven to 180 degrees celsius.
3. Place the lamb on paper towels to drain most of the oil off.
4. Place the lamb in a hot frying pan (oven proof frying pan otherwise place an oven dish in the oven to preheat) and season with salt and pepper.
5. Cook each side until nice and brown then put into the oven (or place the lamb in the oven dish) for about 10 to 15 minutes.
6. Place the mint jelly in a small saucepan with the beef stock and bring to the boil. Then turn the stove down to simmer until half of the liquid is left.
7.Take the lamb out of the oven and rest it somewhere warm for about 5 to 10 minutes
8.Add the peas to the sauce and bring to boil - then take it off the heat.

Serving (for 4 people)
• Place the mashed potatoes in the middle of the 4 plates.
• Slice the lamb and divide them equally on the 4 plates.
• Using a tablespoon, spoon the sauce over the lamb.
• Garnish with a sprig of mint each.