16 baby artichokes
2 legs of baby lamb, 2 1/2 pound each
1 teaspoon black peppercorns, crushed
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 sprigs fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
1 teaspoon honey
8 plum tomatoes, cored, peeled, halved lengthwise, seeds discarded
1/4 cup black Nicoise olives, pitted
1 tablespoon italian parsley, chopped
Zest lemons and cut into julienne. Make juice with two.
Peel and cut the third into sections removing skin and membranes. Blanch lemon zest in boiling water. Strain and set aside. Remove the outer leaves of the baby artichokes.
Cut off leaves 1 inch above the hearts, and trim the bottoms until round and smooth. Halve the artichokes lengthwise and toss them in 1 tablespoon lemon juice. Set aside.
Remove lamb hip bone and fat. Season with pepper and salt. Heat oil in a roasting pan. Brown lamb on all sides. Add thyme, bay leaf, onion, garlic, salt and pepper and artichokes. Stir well.
Roast in 425 degree oven 25 to 30 minutes tossing vegetables every 10 minutes.
Brush the legs with the honey, pour 2 tablespoons lemon juice over meat with lemon zest. Mix well and roast for 5 minutes. Add tomatoes and roast for 15 minutes. Remove from oven when done. For rare inside temperature of lamb is 130 to 140 degrees, medium-rare, 145-155, and for well done, above 170 degrees.
Transfer lamb to a platter. Add 2 tablespoons water to vegetable mix. Taste for seasonings.
Crush pitted olives with a mallet. Carve lamb, surround with vegetables. Sprinkle with lemon fillets and olives.