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Lamb Brochettes with Black Olive & Mint Vinaigrette

Mark Ferri

Yield: Yields 2 cups vinaigrette.

Servings: eight.

The intense meaty flavor of these brochettes is nicely offset by a dish of boiled fresh new potatoes. If you can’t find fresh marjoram, use another fresh herb, like oregano.


For the olive and mint vinaigrette:

  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 Tbs. capers, rinsed
  • 3 oz. (1/2 cup) kalamata or other good-quality black olives, pitted
  • 3 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 1 Tbs. grainy mustard
  • 1 Tbs. chopped fresh marjoram (optional)
  • 1 Tbs. chopped fresh mint
  • 1/3 cup red-wine vinegar; more as needed
  • 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil; more as needed
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

For the brochettes:

  • 4 lb. lamb shoulder or stew meat, cut into pieces of uniform size, about 2-inch cubes
  • Olive oil for brushing
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Nutritional Information

  • Nutritional Sample Size with 1 tsp. olive oil for coating meat
  • Calories (kcal) : 680
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 470
  • Fat (g): 52
  • Saturated Fat (g): 13
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 5
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 33
  • Cholesterol (mg): 160
  • Sodium (mg): 980
  • Carbohydrates (g): 3
  • Fiber (g): 1
  • Protein (g): 47


  • To make the vinaigrette: On a cutting board, mince together the garlic, capers, and olives. Transfer to a mixing bowl. Stir in the shallots, mustard, marjoram, mint, and vinegar. Mix in the olive oil with a fork to make a loose vinaigrette — it does not need to be emulsified. Season with salt and pepper. Taste and add more oil or vinegar if necessary. Set aside.
  • To make the brochettes: Prepare the grill. In a mixing bowl, lightly coat the meat with the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Skewer the lamb by folding or shaping each chunk of meat into a rounded cube. Thread three or four pieces on each skewer, leaving the meat near the pointed end rather than the middle of the skewer.
  • When the grill is hot (you should be able to hold your hand just above the grate for 1 second), use tongs to clean the grate with a lightly oiled paper towel.
  • Grill the brochettes, keeping the exposed ends of the skewers away from the hottest part of the fire if you’re using bamboo. Turn the brochettes every 2 minutes; some will cook faster than others, so you may need to rotate the skewers to even out the grilling. The lamb is medium-rare when the cubes begin to resist pressure when touched, after about 8 minutes. Before serving, let the brochettes rest a moment to allow the juices to redistribute. Drizzle liberally with the vinaigrette.


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