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Rack of Lamb with Ancho-Honey Glaze

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Serves six.

  • To learn more, read:
    Quick Prep, Easy Roast
  • by Molly Stevens from Fine Cooking
    Issue 89

Honey-spiced lamb is a traditional Moroccan festival meal. This simplified version makes the most of the way sweet honey balances the richness of the lamb.

  • 2 racks of lamb (each 1-1/4 to 1-1/2 lb. with 7 to 8 ribs), trimmed, or frenched
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 2 Tbs. red-wine vinegar
  • 1-1/2 tsp. ground cumin, preferably toasted
  • 1 tsp. ancho chile powder
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbs. finely chopped mint, parsley, basil, or cilantro (optional)

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 425°F. Line a small roasting pan or rimmed baking sheet with foil (to make it easier to clean the glaze from the pan).

If necessary, trim the lamb so that only a thin layer of fat remains, being careful not to remove all the fat. Arrange the lamb bone side down in the roasting pan, interlocking the bone ends if necessary to make them fit. Season each rack generously with salt and pepper.

In a small bowl, combine the honey, vinegar, cumin, ancho chile powder, and a pinch each of salt and pepper. Brush the surface of the meat with about half (1/4 cup) of the glaze.

Roast, brushing the lamb after 10 minutes and then again every 5 minutes with the glaze that has begun to caramelize on the roasting pan, until an instant-read thermometer inserted close to but not touching the bones reads 125°F for rare or 130° to 135°F for medium rare, about 20 minutes for rare and 25 minutes for medium rare.

Meanwhile, pour the remaining glaze into a small saucepan, add the orange juice and garlic, and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Simmer until reduced to a slightly syrupy glaze, about 7 minutes. Add the herbs, if using.

Let the lamb rest for about 5 minutes. Cut between the bones to carve the racks into chops and drizzle each chop with a little of the glaze before serving.

Serving Suggestions

Serve herb-flecked couscous or rice pilaf alongside.

nutrition information (per serving):
Calories (kcal): 420; Fat (g): 25; Fat Calories (kcal): 230; Saturated Fat (g): 11; Protein (g): 28; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 11; Carbohydrates (g): 19; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 2; Sodium (mg): 370; Cholesterol (mg): 110; Fiber (g): 1;

Photo: Scott Phillips

Very easy and a big hit with my family.

Excellent pairing. Presents quite lovely with minimal effort.

Delicious, wouldn't change a thing.

This recipe could not have been more tasty! Such a crowd pleaser. As it is heavy, I served it with lemon/cucumber/feta couscous.

Just wonderful. I served this with Israeli Couscous with Saffron, Toasted Pine Nuts and Currents (recipe on this site) which make this a delicious Morrocan meal.

Made it for Xmas dinner and it came out excellent. Everyone requested for a copy of the recipe.

This recipe is awesome! I have made it at least 6 times and is perfect every time. You don't need to change a thing.

This was great! very easy to make. Going to keep this in my company's coming file.

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