Roast Lamb With Madeira Sauce

Roast lamb with Madeira sauce
RFB Photography/ GettyImages
Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 60 mins
Total: 70 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
434 Calories
29g Fat
5g Carbs
35g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 434
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 29g 37%
Saturated Fat 10g 50%
Cholesterol 120mg 40%
Sodium 484mg 21%
Total Carbohydrate 5g 2%
Dietary Fiber 0g 0%
Total Sugars 2g
Protein 35g
Vitamin C 0mg 2%
Calcium 21mg 2%
Iron 3mg 16%
Potassium 538mg 11%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Lamb is such a delicious meat. It should only have the briefest amount of cooking to render it and then left to rest. This will create soft, succulent, tasty lamb.

In this recipe of roast lamb with Madeira sauce, a boned leg is roasted very simply with a drizzle of oil and some fresh herbs. What makes the dish extra special is the sauce. Using the juices released during resting, the residue from the roasting, stock and a little sweet alcohol you will very quickly and easily have a cracking sauce. We suggest Madeira but you can use any sweet wine or sherry. If you want to be a bit fancier, use a Pineau de Charentes, a Sauternes, style wine.


  • 500 grams (1 pound) boneless rolled leg of lamb (ask your butcher to do this)

  • 1 to 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • Fresh rosemary sprigs

  • 500 grams (1 pint) chicken stock

  • 50 milliliters (1/4 cup) Madeira, Pineau de Charentes, sweet wine, or Sherry

  • Salt, to taste

  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Steps to Make It

  1. Preheat the oven to 475 F/220 C/Gas 8

  2. Rub the lamb all over with a generous smear of olive oil.

  3. Place the lamb on a roasting rack, pop this into a roasting tin and lay the rosemary on top.

  4. Place the tin in the preheated oven and roast for 45 minutes for rare, 60 minutes for medium to well done.

  5. Leave the lamb to rest, wrapped in foil and covered in a thick bath towel for at least 30 minutes, 60 if you can.

  6. Pour away only the fat in the roasting tin and place on high heat on top of the stove until smoking slightly. Pour in the chosen alcohol and reduce to a syrup scraping up the residue on the bottom of the pan.

  7. Add the chicken stock and any juices released by the rested lamb. Reduce by two-thirds. Adjust the seasoning and whisk in 1/4 teaspoon of cold butter. Strain through a fine sieve into a gravy boat and keep warm.

  8. Once the lamb is well rested, slice thickly and serve on hot plates surrounded by the sauce.


  • It is important when cooking lamb to let it rest. This allows the fibers in the meat to relax after the heat of cooking. The relaxation of the fibers makes the meat soft and tender when served.
  • To rest the lamb, wrap it in foil and cover with a thick hand towel to insulate it. As the fibers relax, juices are released, these should be saved and used to enrich the sauce. Serve the lamb onto hot plates and this will give back enough heat to the slices without cooking it further.

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