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Rack of Lamb with Herb & Olive Crust

Scott Phillips

Servings: six.


  • 1/3 cup very coarsely chopped pitted Kalamata, Picholine, or Manzanilla olives, or a mix
  • 1/4 cup very coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1-1/2 Tbs. fresh thyme
  • 2 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
  • Pinch crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1-1/2 Tbs. mayonnaise
  • 2 racks of lamb (7 to 8 ribs each), trimmed, or frenched
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3/4 cup fresh breadcrumbs

Nutritional Information

  • Nutritional Sample Size based on six servings
  • Calories (kcal) : 890
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 590
  • Fat (g): 66
  • Saturated Fat (g): 26
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 4.5
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 27
  • Cholesterol (mg): 265
  • Sodium (mg): 670
  • Carbohydrates (g): 4
  • Fiber (g): 0
  • Protein (g): 67


  • Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 450°F.
  • Combine the olives, parsley, thyme, garlic, and red pepper flakes in a mini food processor or a mortar. Process or pound with a pestle to a rough paste. Stir in the mayonnaise. Set aside.
  • If there is more than a thin layer of fat left on the racks of lamb, trim it so that only a thin layer remains. Don’t remove all the fat. Heat a large, heavy skillet (cast iron works very well; don’t use a nonstick pan) over high heat. Season one rack with salt and pepper and set it in the hot skillet, meat side down. When the surface is nicely browned, about 2 minutes, turn the rack with tongs and brown the bottom for another 2 minutes. Remove and repeat with the second rack. If necessary, reduce the heat to medium high.
  • Spread the breadcrumbs in a pie plate. Coat the surface of the lamb with the olive paste, then roll the meat in the breadcrumbs, pressing the crumbs so they adhere. Arrange the racks, bone side down, in a roasting pan (you may need to interlock the bone ends to make them fit). Wrap the tips of the bones with a strip of foil so they don’t burn.
  • Roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the meat reads 120° to 125°F for rare or 130° to 135°F for medium rare, 20 to 25 minutes (the temperature will rise about another 5°F once it’s out of the oven). Let the lamb rest for about 5 minutes. Cut down between the bones to carve into chops, then serve.


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