When is a recipe that takes many hours a fast and easy recipe? When it takes just 10 minutes of your time to prepare.
Admittedly, this recipe for roasted goat isn't weeknight-friendly. But it is ideal for a weekend when you want a bold, richly flavored dinner that sports tons of slow-roasted deliciousness without needing to spend the day slaving in the kitchen.
But first, we must address the issue of goat. Plenty of people think it's a little sketchy. But when properly prepared it is crazy delicious, akin to the best dark meat turkey you'll ever taste. You probably won't find it at most mainstream grocers; farmers markets or ethnic markets are where to go to hunt down this dinner. For this recipe, ask for the shoulder roast, sometimes labeled leg roast.
In fact, getting the meat probably is the hardest part of the whole recipe. Once you've got it, all you do is trim off any fat, rub it with an herb and spice blend, then pop it in a Dutch oven with some carrots and white wine, then ignore it for several hours (or until the meat is so tender you can cut it with a spoon).
If you want to add some roasted potatoes to the mix, add 1 pound of lightly oiled new potatoes to the pot (around the goat) during the last hour of cooking.
SLOW ROASTED ROSEMARY LEG OF GOAT
This recipe was written for a 2 1/4-pound bone-in leg of goat, which will make about 4 servings. If you can't find that size, or need a larger one in order to feed more people, estimate about 2 hours of roasting per pound. We also found that using a ceramic Dutch oven slowed the cooking slightly; a cast-iron pot accelerated it. It's best to check the meat about every 30 minutes after it has roasted for 3 hours.
Start to finish: 4 hours (10 minutes active)
Servings: 4 servings
3 large carrots, cut into 2-inch lengths
1 medium yellow onion, roughly chopped
2 large sprigs fresh rosemary, leaves only
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon black peppercorns
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground dried sage
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 1/4-pound bone-in goat leg
2 1/2 cups white wine
Heat the oven to 425 F. Arrange the carrots and onion in a Dutch oven.
In a mini processor or spice grinder, combine the rosemary, garlic, thyme, fennel, cumin, salt, peppercorns, paprika, sage, coriander and cloves. Grind until a coarse paste forms, then transfer to a small bowl. Add the olive oil and mix to form a loose paste. Set aside.
Use a knife to trim away any fat on the exterior of the meat. Rub the oil-and-spice blend thoroughly over the meat, massaging it into any splits or separations. Set the meat on top of the carrots and onions in the pot. Pour the wine into the pot (not over the goat, which would wash away the seasoning rub).
Set in the oven and cook for 30 minutes. Reduce the heat to 300 F, then cook for another 3 1/2 hours, or until the meat falls away easily from the bone.
Nutrition information per serving: 450 calories; 110 calories from fat (24 percent of total calories); 12 g fat (2.5 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 115 mg cholesterol; 15 g carbohydrate; 3 g fiber; 6 g sugar; 42 g protein; 690 mg sodium.
J.M. Hirsch is the food editor for The Associated Press. He blogs at http://www.LunchBoxBlues.com and tweets at http://twitter.com/JM--Hirsch