Summer means many things to me: fireworks at 10:30 pm; long, long nights and early mornings; the most beautiful blue sky and cool Puget Sound; hiking; the all-too-short season of those delicious Rainier cherries, pluots, and heirloom tomatoes; and grilling - in particular, a giant hunk of lamb. This is probably my favorite grill recipe ever, and I'm such a sucker for lamb.
If you're only familiar with grey lamb smeared with mint jelly, forget about all of that! This has the great marinated flavor of red wine, plus the savory flavor of soy sauce, and that fresh herbal flavor of cilantro that I love so much, and nicely charred end bits. If you get a boneless leg of lamb, one end will be smaller than the other, so you're sure to have a level of doneness to suit anyone, and you're almost guaranteed leftovers.
I believe this came from an old issue of Sunset magazine from years ago, and I haven't changed it a bit. It's perfect as it.
Barbecued Lamb with Red Wine and Cilantro
2.5 lb boneless leg of lamb (1/2 a leg), tied with butcher's twineCombine marinade ingredients. Marinate lamb for 4-5 hours in a 9x13 baking dish, turning once.
1 cup dry red wine
3/8 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup olive oil
3/4 cup chopped cilantro
1 bay leaf
2 cloves garlic, sliced
Turn grill to medium high. Remove lamb, reserving marinade, and cook, 8 minutes for the first side, 6 minutes second side, to sear, basting every few minutes. Turn off one burner (or move over half your coals) and put lamb on the cool side of the grill to cook indirectly. Cook until thermometer in the largest area registers 135-140 degrees for rare in the largest portion, approx 25 minutes, while continuing to baste. Remove from heat, let rest for 10 minutes under a foil tent, then slice and serve. The end bits will be well done, and the large middle will be rare, so there's something for everyone!