• As the global Covid-19 pandemic continues to restrict international travel, many wanderlust travellers around the world are craving their next trip.

    Wouter Vermeulen, General Manager Southern Africa, Air France KLM, notes that while we are all being responsible citizens practising social distancing, people across the world are finding creative ways to bring the world to them.

    “During this time of lockdown we have seen people embracing virtual travel to their dream destinations. And while it is no replacement for the real thing, it helps keep that travel dream alive. Another way we have seen people bringing the world to them is through food! Seeing all of those posts from people baking bread is enough to send you into a day dream about indulging in a freshly-baked baguette as you picture yourself strolling through the streets of Paris,” Vermeulen says.

    So, what else could bring France a little closer to you until it is safe and permitted to travel again? Air France and Atout France, the French Tourist office in South Africa, have teamed up with Jenny Morris and others to share traditional French recipes to help bring the magic of France into your own home.

     Jenny Morris’ slow-baked lamb in a rosemary dough crust

    Jenny Morris isn’t one to shy away from a challenge – and this recipe is worth every bit of preparation. ” For me, it all started with the French kitchen. The father of French cuisine, Georges-Auguste Escoffier, is my hero,” Jenny says. The chef adds that this dish is inspired by her love for two French staples. “I have eaten some of the best lamb and bread in the world in France so I decided to marry the two in one dish.”

    The lamb

    2.5 – 3 kg leg of lamb, bone-in
    3 cloves garlic, peeled and cut in half lengthwise
    4 sprigs fresh rosemary
    Some olive oil
    1 teaspoon salt
    1 teaspoon ground white pepper
    1 tablespoon ground cumin
    Juice of 1 lemon

    Make slits in the lamb and insert the garlic and rosemary into the slits
    Make a paste with olive oil, salt, pepper, ground cumin and lemon juice, rub all over the lamb
    Heat a large frying pan and sear the lamb all over, remove from the pan and cool
    Place the prepared leg of lamb onto the dough and enclose it by wrapping the dough around the lamb and pressing it together to seal
    Let the bone stick out
    If you wish you can decorate the wrapped lamb with dough off-cuts, fresh rosemary and half heads of garlic
    Place the lamb onto a baking tray and bake at 180°C for 20mn, then turn the oven down to 150°C and bake for 3hours
    Take the lamb to the table and break it open, remove and carve

    The dough for encasing the lamb

    4 cups flour
    2 teaspoons salt
    4 teaspoons sugar
    10g instant yeast
    4 tablespoons finely chopped rosemary
    450 ml lukewarm water

    Place the flour, salt, sugar, rosemary and yeast into the bowl of a food processor, attach the dough hook and, with the motor running slowly, add the water and knead the dough for 10 minutes or until the dough is smooth and elastic to the touch.
    Place the dough in an oiled bowl, cover and let it rise to twice its size
    Now punch the dough down and roll it out on a lightly floured surface

    Imka Webb

    Imka Webb is a freelance digital marketing expert and the digital editor of Food & Home Entertaining magazine.  www.imkawebb.com