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Roast Rack of Lamb with Lemon-Mint Salsa Verde


Serves eight.

  • by from Fine Cooking
    Issue 98

Plan ahead because the lamb needs to marinate for at least 8 hours. To serve, lean the cut chops up against a pile of roasted garlic mashed potatoes and a side of bright green beans.

  • 2 medium lemons
  • 1 cup packed fresh spearmint or grapefruit mint leaves (1 oz.)
  • 2 Tbs. chopped garlic
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 frenched racks of lamb (8 ribs and 1 to 1-1/2 lb. each)

Finely grate 1 Tbs. zest from the lemons and then squeeze them to yield 3 Tbs. juice. Combine the zest and juice with the mint, garlic, 2 tsp. salt, and 1 tsp. pepper in a food processor. Pulse a few times and then with the motor running, add the oil. Reserve 1/4 cup and refrigerate.

Trim the fat on the lamb racks to a 1/4 -inch-thick layer. Poke holes all over the lamb with a fork to help the marinade penetrate. Lightly score the fat layer about 1/16 inch deep in a 1/2 -inch diamond pattern. Arrange the racks, fat side up, in a 9x13-inch baking dish, overlapping the bones if necessary to fit the racks in the dish. Brush the remaining salsa verde all over the racks. Cover and refrigerate for at least 8 hours and up to 24 hours.

Heat the oven to 425°F. Take the lamb out of the fridge and arrange the racks fat side up in a large roasting pan (or rimmed baking sheet)—they should fit in one layer. Brush the top and sides of each rack with 1 Tbs. of the reserved salsa verde. Roast for 15 minutes. Brush with 1 Tbs. more of the salsa verde and continue to roast to an internal temperature of 130° to 135°F for medium rare, an additional 15 to 20 minutes. Let the meat rest for 5 minutes before carving into chops. Drizzle the remaining salsa verde over each serving.

nutrition information (per serving):
Calories (kcal): 440, Fat (kcal): 36, Fat Calories (g): 320, Saturated Fat (g): 12, Protein (g): 25, Monounsaturated Fat (g): 19, Carbohydrates (mg): 2, Polyunsaturated Fat (mg): 3, Sodium (g): 360, Cholesterol (g): 100, Fiber (g): 1,

Photo: Scott Phillips

Fantastic recipe, and very easy! Made this for Easter dinner a couple of years ago, will try it again this year!

I'm not really a lamb lover, but I'll give it a 5-star rating because my guests raved and even the piece I tried tasted pretty good. Like others, I seared mine before putting it in to roast. It was very easy and elegant.

Terrific recipe. I made this for a dinner party and got rave reviews. I consider myself a knowledgeable cook, but I don't have much experience eating or cooking lamb and this turned out great. I seared the lamb before cooking as well. Served with FC roasted smashed potatoes and a greek salad.

Fantastic recipe. Before cooking in the oven I lightly scraped off the marinade and then seared the rack for a couple of minutes on each side in a skillet. After searing, I then poured the marinade back on the lamb and then baked in the oven. Was a huge hit.

Great recipe! My family loved it.

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