Today is Greek Independence Day!

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Joan Lunden

Recipes /

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Today is Greek Independence Day so I wanted to share one of my favorite Greek recipes... 

This is an old Greek recipe, passed down from generation to generation — but not in my family. It's a favorite of Irene Katris, who was my bookkeeper for years and became a good friend. Irene shared it in my book “Joan Lunden’s Healthy Cooking”. This slow-cooked, fall - off - the - bone leg of lamb is well worth the time and tender loving care that it takes to produce. I like to serve the usual mint jelly with this mouth-watering Greek favorite. A 6-pound leg of lamb is enough for sixteen servings, so this is an ideal recipe for a small dinner party.

22313 l
Irene's Roasted Leg of Lamb

Irene's Roasted Leg of Lamb


  • 6 pound leg of lamb, trimmed of all visible fat
  • 4 to 8 garlic cloves or to taste, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons dried oregano Salt and pepper to taste Juice of 2 lemons
  • 2 onions, chopped coarse
  • 3 carrots, chopped coarse
  • 21/2 pounds small red potatoes, scrubbed
  • 2 zucchini, chopped coarse Paprika to taste


  • Preheat the oven to 500°F  
  • Using the tip of a knife, cut small slits all over the lamb. 
  • Wedge the garlic slices into the slits (using as much of the garlic as you like).
  • Rub the lamb all over with the olive oil, the oregano, and salt and pepper to taste. Put the lamb in a large roasting pan, and squeeze the lemons over it. 
  • Arrange all the vegetables around the lamb and season them to taste with the paprika. 
  • Add 'A inch of water to the pan, and roast the lamb and vegetables in the pre-heated oven for 30 minutes. 
  • Turn the oven down to 300°F., and roast the lamb for 21/2 to 3 more hours (or until a meat thermometer registers 160°F.), basting it with the juices from time to time and adding additional water if necessary. (The lamb must be well cooked to develop the right flavor.)
  • Let the lamb rest for 20 minutes before carving.
  • Serve each portion with some of the vegetables.
  • Serves 16.

Nutritional Analysis per serving:

  • 300 calories
  • 28% calories from fat
  • 9 grams of fat
  • 78 milligrams of sodium
Categories: Recipes
About The Author
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Joan Lunden truly exemplifies today’s modern working woman. An award-winning journalist, bestselling author, motivational speaker, successful entrepreneur, one of America’s most recognized and trusted television personalities, this mom of seven continues to do it all. As host of Good Morning America for nearly two decades, Lunden brought insight to top issues for millions of Americans each day. The longest running host ever on early morning television, Lunden reported from 26 countries, covered 4 presidents and 5 Olympics and kept Americans up to date on how to care for their homes, their families and themselves.

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