We're in new Zealand at the moment, and I grabbed the opportunity to cook some rack of lamb; we don't often get fresh rack of lamb in Canada, and definitely not at these great prices!
We are staying at a place that has a kitchen, and have stocked some basic kitchen supplies, but I am very conscious of the fact that everything needs to be used before we leave, so I am trying not to buy too many new and different ingredients when planning a meal.
I used some of the boysenberry jam we have, fresh basil, olive oil and balsamic vinegar to marinade the lamb, which I cut into chops . I served this on top of warm potato salad, fresh green beans and grape tomatoes.
The sweetness of the boysenberry jam was nicely offset by the tartness of the lemon juice and grainy mustard in the potato salad. The lamb chops were juicy, with a beautifully caramelized outside.
To make the marinade, combine:
2 tablespoons boysenberry jam
1/4 cup of Balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
2 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
salt and pepper
Remove the fat cap if it still on the rack of lamb, and cut between the bones so that you have individual chops. I had 8 chops.
Place them into the marinade, cover and refrigerate for 4 hours.
Make the dressing for the potato salad by combining:
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons grainy mustard
Juice of 1 lemon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Boil 2 white potatoes, cut into chunks, until just tender. Drain, and leave in the colander for 5 minutes to allow excess water to drain off completely.
Add to the dressing, and gently toss, allowing the hot potatoes to absorb the dressing.
Blanch and cool green beans, set aside.
Remove the lamb chops from the marinade, reserving the marinade.
Cook the chops in a very hot pan, over high heat, turning once. The lamb will cook very quickly, about 3 minutes per side, but this all depends on the size.
Remove the chops from the pan to rest.
Add the marinade to the pan, and bring to a boil, reducing until it becomes thick and syrupy.
Remove from the heat.
Add the blanched green beans and a handful of halved grape tomatoes to the potatoes and dressing.
Mix gently, taste and adjust seasoning.
To serve, place some potato salad onto each plate, and then carefully place 4 lamb chops on top. Drizzle the reduced marinade over the lamb. Crumble blue cheese around the outside, for an added tang.
- If you cannot find rack of lamb, use any type of lamb chop that is available. You could also use chicken breast or legs, or beef steaks suitable for grilling or pan frying.
- Any type of jam or sweet chutney/relish can be used. It is this sweetness that gives the beautiful caramelization on the outside of the lamb chops.
- Serve the chops as a hot canape, on top of risotto or pasta, or with a green salad.
- By adding the hot potatoes to the dressing, it allows them to absorb more of the flavour. This way you have the dressing inside of the potatoes instead of just coating the outside.
- The blue cheese is optional, but it was really nice with both the potatoes and the lamb.
- The lamb can be marinaded the day before if you like; it can also be frozen in the marinade. Defrost before cooking.
- If you choose to grill the lamb, use the marinade to baste the chops as they cook. You can also reduce it in a pan to create a glaze for drizzling.