Monday, April 30, 2012

Herb Coated Rack of Lamb

I'm not a huge fan of lamb. For one thing, I think lambs are really cute so it's difficult to want to eat them and two, lamb can be kind of gamey. However, in the spirit of fancy Easter meals, I decided that lamb was appropriate (plus, it was on sale).

Ingredients [serves 4]
1 8-rib frenched rack of lamb
2 tablespoons fresh rosemary leaves
4 tablespoons fresh parsley
4 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons olive oil
sprinkle of salt, pinch of pepper

I started by preparing the herb coating. First, I pulled the leaves off of the stems of rosemary. The stems are way too woody and not delicious so they're not really meant to be eaten.

Then, I threw the rosemary, parsley, garlic, and 1 tablespoon of olive oil into a food processor and pulsed the mixture until it took on the consistency of a thick pesto.
Then, I prepared the lamb by seasoning it with salt and pepper generously on both sides. Frenched rack of lamb just means that the butcher cleans off a lot of the fat and meat off of the end of the rib bones so that it creates sort of a nice handle and just looks presentable and lovely.
Then, in a large pan, I heated up 1 tablespoon of olive oil over a medium heat and seared the lamb, about three minutes on each side. I just wanted to get a little bit of golden color. Meanwhile, I got my oven preheating to 350 degrees.
Next, I let the lamb rest in a baking dish for a few minutes before spreading the herb mixture all over the top (you want to rub it onto the fleshy side, not the bone-y side) and then put it in the oven. After 15 minutes (I used my trusty kitchen timer) I covered the lamb with a piece of foil and let it cook for another 10 minutes. I checked it with a meat thermometer and it was perfect - 135 degrees - which means medium rare. Then I removed it from the oven and let it rest for about 10 minutes before serving.
Look at how pretty! The herbs retain their bright and pretty green color, which makes for a beautiful presentation.
I cut the rack into two-rib portions per person and served with the roasted vegetables and rice pilaf from my previous two posts.
Here's a lovely profile shot to show the nice pink medium-rare meat. Super juicy, really tender, and the herbs give it great flavor.
Yum.

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