australian lamb cucumber and watercress salad
1 Australian Lamb leg, boneless
2 tablespoons coarse sea or kosher salt
2 teaspoons freshly ground pepper
2 teaspoons fresh oregano leaves
2 Persian or 1/2 english cucumber
1/2 bulb fennel (anise), white part only
2 bunches watercress, leaves separated from roots
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
Remove netting and open leg of lamb.
Pound to around 1-2 inch thickness.
Season with salt, pepper and oregano.
Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes to 1 hour, or overnight for a more “cured” flavor.
Drain away excess juices and pat lamb dry with a paper towel, wiping off excess seasoning.
Allow to come to room temperature, then brush generously with olive oil.
Preheat grill or barbecue to medium high and add remaining oil.
Add lamb and brown on all sides, then continue to barbecue, turning occasionally for 10-20 minutes, depending on thickness.
The lamb can be finished in a covered grill or 350F oven.
Transfer to clean platter, cover loosely with foil and allow to rest for at least 10 minutes.
For the salad, cut cucumber and fennel in half lengthwise and slice as thinly as possible.
For paper-thin slices, use a vegetable peeler or mandolin.
Place in large bowl with watercress leaves.
Just before serving, whisk the oil, juice of 1/2 of the lemon, mustard, and season to taste.
Toss through the salad.
Place salad on large platter or individual plates.
Slice desired amount of lamb thinly across the grain and arrange over salad.
Squeeze over extra lemon juice, or lemon-infused oil.
Toss the salad with half of the dressing and serve with the chops.
Drizzle the chops with the rest of the dressing.
Serve with a dry, full-bodied white wine and crusty bread.