Orange, honey and tamarind-glazed leg of lamb

Serves: 4-6
Prep: 15 minutes
Cooks In: 1 hour

Orange, honey and tamarind-glazed leg of lamb

A good old-fashioned lamb roast is true Kiwi comfort food, right? In this recipe, I’ve taken this classic and given it my own delicious twist. 

This roast is sorta like who I am all wrapped up in one dish! It combines a New Zealand staple (lamb) with a range of delicious Asian flavours (tamarind, star anise, sesame and soy).

It’s super simple to make and can be on the dinner table in just over an hour. Serve with steamed bok choy and rice or take a walk on the more traditional side with roast pumpkin, potatoes or kumara.

It also makes a great dinner party dish. It’s gluten and dairy-free, so it will suit a range of guests around your table.

Try serving any leftover lamb in wraps with my Crunchy Asian Slaw for a delicious lunch.

This recipe is from the August/September issue of NADIA magazine.

Photography by: Todd Eyre.


Print Recipe


  • orange juice 2 cups, freshly squeezed (from about 4-5 oranges)
  • honey 2½ teaspoons
  • star anise 1 whole
  • chilli 1, seeds removed, finely chopped
  • sesame oil 1¼ teaspoons
  • soy sauce* 1¼ teaspoons
  • tamarind purée 2½ teaspoons


  • olive oil 1½ tablespoons
  • lamb leg 1, butterflied (about 1.2kg) at room temperature
  • coriander chopped, to serve


Preheat oven to 200°C. Line an oven tray or roasting dish with baking paper.

  1. Place orange juice, honey, star anise, chilli, sesame oil, soy sauce and tamarind purée in a small pot. Bring to boil and cook on medium-high heat until syrupy and reduced to about ½ cup liquid (about 12-15 minutes). Reserve about one-third of the glaze in a ramekin for serving.

  2. Heat olive oil in a large frying pan on a high heat. Season lamb with salt and sear in frying pan for about 2 minutes on each side. Transfer to oven tray and spoon over glaze, reserving a little for basting. Roast for about 30 minutes for medium lamb, basting once with glaze halfway through.

  3. Cover lamb with foil and rest for about 15 minutes before slicing. Spoon over reserved glaze and scatter with coriander. Serve with steamed bok choy and rice or roast pumpkin, potatoes or kumara.

*Check label if eating gluten free.