Rack of Lamb

Hi folks!  It’s been a while since I posted anything, the holidays have been busy.  And it has definitely been a while since I posted anything about food.   So here goes!

This year for the holidays Steve and I were going to stick around town.  Some family near by invited us to a Christmas brunch, which was super delicious, so I decided to plan something for Christmas dinner!  Well, laziness ensued that evening and we were still stuffed from brunch and snacking that we didn’t get around to eating a real dinner on Christmas night.  But the day after Christmas was as good a day as any to experiment with making Rack of Lamb!

I did some initial research online on how to cook rack of lamb, what to cook it with, what spices went well with it, etc.  and I stumbled on a few recipes on how to cook the meal.  One of the recipes wasn’t actually a real recipe, it was just a list of ingredients…the sauce sort of told you how to make it, but it didn’t explain how to cook the meat.  So I found another recipe that included some other ingredients that I didn’t particularly want to use, but explained how to actually prepare and cook the meat.  So I improvised my own recipe to create my own Rack of Lamb.  I hope you enjoy it as much as we did, it certainly turned out fantastic for a first try.  Feel free to change the cooking time too…I cooked mine a bit too long and it wasn’t as rare as I wanted…but still very delicious and juicy.  Oh and the sauce separated…like I said there was no real instructions with the sauce, so I did the best I could, it still tasted great though.  Here we go, lets see If i can remember what I did:

Note:  I didn’t really list amounts for herbs and such, I always just eyeball things or taste it if i can to get the flavor I want.  I wouldn’t put more than 1tb of any herb in with the crumbs though, but its up to you.

Ingredients: (Makes 2 servings)

  • Small rack of lamb (4 ribs)
  • bottle of red wine (I used cabernet sauvignon)
  • 2 slices of whole wheat bread
  • 2 medium or large red potatoes
  • Beef stock
  • 2 small hand fulls of spring mix lettuce
  • 3tbs olive oil
  • 1/4C butter
  • dried minced garlic
  • parsley, finely chopped (or dried)
  • rosemary
  • thyme
  • salt and pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 450°.

Boil a pot of water and a little salt and add the halved red potatoes.  Cook until tender.  They should be ready by the time the lamb is done.

Make Bread Crumbs!  Take the two slices of WW bread and stick them on a cooking sheet or some aluminum foil and stick them in the oven.  Bake them until they are hard all the way through, but not too burnt.  Let them cool for a little bit, then break them into small pieces and stick the pieces into a food processor.  Grind the bread until it makes fine crumbs.  Put the crumbs in a bowl.  Mix in some dried minced garlic, rosemary, thyme, parsley, salt and pepper to taste.  Then add 2tbs of the olive oil and mix everything together.  Set aside.

Next prepare the meat by trimming off as much of the excess fat as you can and set the trimmings aside.  The fat will hinder the taste of the lamb if too much is left on.   Some people leave the entire rack of lamb intact, but I decided to cut them before cooking them so I could bread all sides of each rib.

Take a saute pan and put the remaining 1tbs of olive oil in the pan.  Heat the oil on high until is is hot and then add each piece of lamb into the pan.  Cook each side briefly until they brown.  This should not take more than a minute or 2. Place lamb pieces on a cutting board and use a paper towel to remove any excess oil from each piece.  Turn the heat off on the pan for now.

Take a glass baking dish and grease it with olive oil spray.   Then take your bread crumbs and rub all sides of each lamb piece.  Once you have a desired about of breading on the lamb, place each piece of lamb in the baking dish with the bones facing down.  At this point, if you wish, you can wrap the exposed bones in foil to prevent them from burning in the oven.  I actually forgot to do this, but the bones came out fine.  I will probably do it next time if I use bigger pieces of lamb.  Place the lamb in the oven and bake them for about 20 minutes.  I think mine were in for about 22 minutes and they were a little on the done side.  You can use a cooking thermometer to check the inner temp on a few pieces to cook them to the correct temperature (I don’t have a thermometer though…so I had to guess hehe)

While the lamb is in the oven it’s time to make the sauce!  Now, even though my sauce turned out tasting great, it separated, and I’m not sure why (I’m not an expert cook here)  So feel free to adjust this part of the recipe to make it better :P

Take the trimmings from the lamb and brown them in the pan used to brown the pieces of lamb.  Remove the trimmings and deglaze the pan with 1/2c of red wine.  Then pour a glass of wine in a wine glass and start sipping while you cook :) Add some rosemary and thyme to the wine in the pan and cook down to 1/3rd of its original amount.  Add the beef stock and reduce.  Whisk in the butter and cook until it starts to thicken (mine didn’t get that thick…again I think i messed up here, but I think it is supposed to get a little thick).  You can add some salt and pepper to taste, but I think the butter and beef stock add enough salt to the flavor.

Place the lettuce on two plates, add the halved potatoes, and then place two pieces of lamb over each potato.  Pour the sauce around on the plate and serve hot!

Let me know if there are some better ways to make sauce.  If I make this again (which Steve said should now be a weekly staple haha!) I will do more cooking research on sauces.  Enjoy!

Resources:

http://huntsville.about.com/od/food/ss/TeenCuisine_2.htm

http://www.buzzle.com/articles/how-to-cook-rack-of-lamb.html

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1 Comment

  1. Mom Says:

    I forgot to ask about your culinary experimenting–gosh that looks absolutely delicious–keep track of how long you cook it because you’re right, a little rarer is the best. Hope you get some feedback on the sauce. Uh, next time for Thanksgiving or Christmas, when you are in town, we’ll buy the rack if you cook the lamb! Is it a deal?
    Steve, you must feel like you dine in a five-star restaurant sometimes…Alix, I think you did the wrong job at Epicure….when I visit again, just make sure you didn’t have rack of lamb the day before I come…
    love u both!

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