The Professional Chef Discovers Australian Lamb

Kentucky-Style Barbequed Lamb

This Kentucky-style barbequed lamb leg slowly smokes for up to ten hours, until it becomes soft as butter. The pit should be maintained at 250 degrees Fahrenheit. Chef Tucker Bunch coats the leg with a dry rub, which forms a delicious crust and infuses the meat with flavor as it cooks. If you don't have a smoker, you can alternatively set up a gas grill with one burner turned on to low heat.

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Ingredients Amount
Lamb leg, bone-in, 5 lb. 1 ea.
 
Rub
Black pepper, freshly ground 2 Tbsp.
Brown sugar 4 tsp.
Kosher salt 1 Tbsp.
Garlic powder 1 tsp.
Ground allspice ¼ tsp.
Worcestershire sauce 2 Tbsp.
 
Dipping sauce
Water 2 cups
Worcestershire sauce ¼ cup
Cider vinegar ¼ cup
Fresh lemon juice 2 Tbsp.
Brown sugar 2 tsp.
Tomato paste 1 Tbsp.
Black pepper, freshly ground 1 tsp.
Kosher salt ½ tsp.
Onion powder ½ tsp.
Garlic powder ½ tsp.
Ground allspice ¼ tsp.

Method

  1. For the rub: Prepare and season the lamb the night before you plan to cook. In a small bowl, combine the dry ingredients. Pat the lamb dry with paper towels. Coat the lamb leg with the Worcestershire sauce, then coat liberally with the rub. The sauce aids in adhering the rub. Place the meat in a suitable pan and refrigerate, uncovered, until it's time to go in the smoker.

  2. For the dipping sauce: Place all ingredients in a non-reactive saucepan, whisking to combine. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a low simmer and cook until richly flavored and slightly reduced, about 20 minutes. Transfer the sauce to a non-reactive serving bowl to cool.

  3. Setup the smoker: Using hickory wood, bring the smoker or pit to a temperature of 250°F for at least one hour before placing the lamb in the cooker.

  4. To cook the lamb: When the temperature of the smoker has stabilized, place the lamb, fat side up, in the center of the cooking grate over a drip pan and away from the heat. Fill the drip pan with boiling water. Close the lid.

  5. Baste the lamb with the sauce every half hour, but only after the bark, or crust, has set on the meat. If the meat begins to get too browned, cover it loosely with aluminum foil. Keep the temperature steady, refueling the cooker as needed.

  6. Cook the lamb until it is falling off the bone tender, 6 to 8 hours. When it's ready, a fork should enter the meat with little resistance.

  7. Transfer the cooked lamb to a cutting board, tent with foil and let rest for at least 20 minutes.

  8. Serve: Slice the meat thinly across the grain or finely chop it with a cleaver. Spoon half of the dipping sauce over the meat. Serve the lamb on toasted or grilled hamburger buns or slices of white bread, or, all by itself, passing the remaining dipping sauce on the side.

Yield: 1 shoulder