Friday, May 6, 2011

Garlic-Crusted Roast Rack of Lamb

Lamb is my husband's favorite food, he orders it everywhere we go. Lamb was something I had never made at home, but for his birthday I promised him I'd give it a go. I went to the store, asked the butcher for 1.75 pounds, and thanked him as he handed it over, perfectly cleaned and fresh. Then I saw the price tag. $65! Yes, the lamb at my lovely gourmet grocery store was $35 per pound. I called Kevin and said, "How do you feel about steak for your birthday dinner?" Once I told him the price of the lamb he thought that was a great idea! So we didn't have lamb for his birthday but I knew I owed him one. We were at Costco that weekend and guess what, Australian rack of lamb was $12 per pound! Yes- I love Costco! We bought a nice size rack and I went home and made my first ever Garlic-Crusted Roast Rack of Lamb. I adapted my version from Food & Wine magazine and several other recipes I scoured as I prepared for the meal. My preparation is a combination of a roasted rack and pan fried individual chops. I served it with creamy gnocchi, sweet potato fries and homemade yogurt dip. Success!

Garlic-Crusted Roast Rack of Lamb
Juicy, tender chops in a flavorful crust.
Serves 2

8 garlic cloves, peeled
1/4 cup rosemary leaves
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 rack of lamb, frenched
Salt and freshly ground pepper

In a mini food processor, combine the garlic, rosemary and olive oil and process until the garlic is finely chopped. Season the lamb rack with salt and pepper and rub the garlic-rosemary oil all over them. Set the rack fat side up on a large rimmed baking sheet and let stand for 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 450°. Roast the lamb in the upper third of the oven for 10 minutes. Turn the rack and roast for 10 minutes longer for rare meat. Transfer the racks to a carving board, stand them upright and let rest for 10 minutes.

Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium high heat. Carve the racks in between the rib bones. Sear each chop for 30 seconds on each side for medium-rare. Serve immediately with yogurt sauce.

Yogurt sauce
1/2 cup Greek yogurt
1 T. fresh lemon juice
1 garlic clove, minced
Salt & pepper, to taste

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and refrigerate until serving.
                                               Photo courtesy of Food & Wine

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