1- 5 - 6 lb. leg of lamb (with bone)
3 garlic cloves, thinly slivered
salt and black pepper to taste
2 tablespoons dried greek oregano, crumbled
1/4 cup olive oil
juice of 2 large lemons
20 small red potatoes
3 tablespoons tomato paste
1/4 cup cold water
2 cups hot water
1 teaspoon crumbled dried rosemary
1 teaspoon dried thyme
Fresh rosemary for garnish
Preheat the oven to 450º.
With a sharp knife, make small slits on both sides of the lamb and insert the garlic slivers into the slits. Season the lamb all over with salt and pepper and 1 tablespoon of the oregano, then brush lightly with the olive oil. Place the lamb fat side up on a rack in a large roasting pan, pour the lemon juice over the toop and roast for 30 minutes, uncovered.
Meanwhile, peel the potatoes and place in a large mixing bowl. In a small bowl, combine the tomato paste and cold water, mix till well blended, pour over the potatoes, and toss to coat evenly. Add the hot water to the roasting pan, arrange the potatoes around the lamb, and sprinkle them with the remaining 1 tablespoon oregano, the rosemary, and the thyme. Reduce the oven temperature to 325º and continue roasting, uncovered, till the lamb reaches an internal temperature of 160º on a meat thermometer and is fork tender, about 1 1/2 hours, basting the meat and potatoes from time to time with the pan juices and adding a little more water if necessary.
Transfer the lamb and potatoes to a large platter and keep hot. Remove the rack from the roasting and bring the juices to a boil on top of the stove, scraping any bits and pieces from the bottom of the pan and adding enough water to make about 2 cups of light gravy. Keep the gravy hot.
To serve, carve the lamb, arrange the slices in the middle of a large, heated serving platter, arrange the potatoes around the edges, and garnish with rosemary sprigs. Pour the gravy into a sauceboat and pass.