Saturday, May 7, 2011

Herb Crusted Lamb Rack

Tonight's dinner was to be a lamb rack - another long-time resident of our freezer (which is actually pretty unusual - we might stash mince or sausages in there but wouldn't usually buy non-pre-destined fancy cuts of meat.

It's not really the sort of thing you want to just chuck in the oven - it needed some sort of gussying up so I went hunting for a recipe that looked the part. The one I settled on not only looked delicous, but had the added bonus of being possible without a chaotic 5pm dash to New World to pick up additional ingredients.

It was pretty easy, too - and didn't take too long, which was a bonus as we were both pretty hungry but (as often seems to happen, to us anyway) hadn't bothered to do any preparation until we were at the eating point of the hunger cycle (it did still take about an hour, including prepping and cooking a bunch of roast veg - not a super quick fix). The herby crust is nicely crunchy thanks to the pre-toasted breadcrumbs. You do the toasting in the oven, which dries out the bread and makes it crunchy throughout, instead of just on the surface as you'd get if you put it in the toaster. I initially aimed to use my mini food processer to crumb the toast, but found the coarser crumb I got by crumbling it in my hands was better - the toast was so brittle it was easy to do, and the food processor more or less made it into dust!

The rest of the crust is flat leaf parsley (something we've actually coaxed into growing in our apartment, yay!), garlic, and olive oil to hold it together. I think next time I might try to think of something else to help with the binding, as I would have preferred a little less oil (which wouldn't have been an issue had we not also had roast veggies).

The meat was seasoned, then fried briefly to develop a nice crust. It smelled delicious at this point - so cruel when there's still another half hour until eating time!

The top is then smeared with mustard and covered with the crust. And then it goes in the oven until it's completely delicious. We like our meat fairly pink, and half an hour was spot on for us; if you prefer less of a rosy glow give it a bit longer.

This was really very tasty - the flavour of the mustard and the coarse, crunchy crumbs made for a delicious meal. The lamb was tender and beautifully cooked, and it vanished pretty quickly - always the best indicator of success. ;-) Have you tried any delicious new dinner recipes lately?

Herb Crusted Lamb Rack (adapted from Bill Granger)
2 slices of bread
1 Tbsp finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
zest of half a lemon
1 crushed garlic clove
2 Tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper to season
1 strip lamb rack
extra olive oil
1 Tbsp dijon mustard

Preheat the oven to 180ÂșC. Place the bread on a baking tray and toast for 20 minutes, or until lightly golden. Crumble the toasted bread with your hands. Place the breadcrumbs with the parsley, zest, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper into a bowl and stir to combine.

Rub a little extra olive oil over the lamb racks and season with salt and pepper. Heat a frying pan over high heat until hot, then place the racks, fat-side down, in the pan and cook for 2 minutes. Remove from the pan and place on a baking tray. Spread the cooked side of the lamb racks with mustard and press on the breadcrumb mixture.

Cook for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the lamb is cooked and nicely pink. Remove the lamb from the oven, cover with foil and leave to rest for 10 minutes. Cut in half to serve. Serves 2.


  1. That crust looks great -- I've got a mini lamb roast lined up for dinner tonight, and I think I'll give this spin. Thanks for the inspiration!

  2. How did it turn out? We really loved ours, had the leftovers tonight - almost as good second time around, too! :-)


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