About this recipe:Just a few fresh ingredients, simply cooked, make a warmly satisfying meal. Aubergines and shallots, whose flavours intensify with roasting, make perfect partners for tender, succulent lamb. Serve with warm, crusty bread.
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp balsamic or red wine vinegar
4 lean lamb leg steaks, trimmed of excess fat
2 tsp black peppercorns
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 large aubergines
2 garlic cloves, crushed
400g cherry tomatoes, pricked
TO GARNISH chopped fresh coriander
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Mix 1 tbsp of the oil with the vinegar and lightly brush this marinade over both sides of the steaks. Crush the peppercorns and add the cumin seeds. Sprinkle the mixture over the steaks, pat it in gently and then place the steaks in a non-metallic dish. Set aside, or cover and refrigerate for several hours.
Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas 6. Put the shallots in a large, heatproof bowl and pour over enough boiling water to cover. Leave for 2–3 minutes, then drain. Peel off the skins, then return them to the bowl.
Trim the ends from the aubergines and cut them into 2.5cm chunks. Add these to the shallots. Drizzle the remaining oil over the vegetables. Add the crushed garlic, then toss to lightly coat the vegetables with oil.
Heat a large, heavy-based roasting tin over a moderately high heat on the hob. Quickly sear the steaks for about 1 minute on each side, then remove and set aside in the original marinade dish.
Tip the vegetables into the hot tin and spread them out. Place in the oven and roast for 15–20 minutes until softened. Lay the lamb steaks over the vegetables and drizzle over all the juices left in the dish. Return to the oven to roast for 10 minutes.
Scatter the tomatoes into the tin and return to the oven for a further 8–-10 minutes until the lamb is cooked to your liking and the vegetables are tender. Season to taste and serve sprinkled with chopped coriander.
How to roast lamb
Watch our video to see how easy it is to roast lamb to perfection. Watch now!
For a vegetarian version, use cheese instead of lamb steaks. First roast the aubergine and onion mixture, sprinkled with cumin seeds, for 25–30 minutes, turning once, then scatter over the tomatoes and roast for a further 5 minutes. Finally top with 225g thinly sliced mozzarella or halloumi cheese and return to the oven for 5 minutes. Scatter with olives or pine nuts.