Thursday, February 28, 2013

Grilled Rack of Lamb (Recipe)

Best.  Lamb.  Ever.

We've been buying chicken, eggs, beef, and various cuts of lamb from River Cottage Farm at our favorite Farmers Market for almost a year now.  It's where I got the lamb shanks for the New Years Day Garage Pot Roast a couple months ago, for example.  We keep going back because it's good stuff, and I'm especially fond of their lamb.

We've never tried a rack of lamb and I had to wait a few weeks to get my hands on this one.  This is something special.  Not wanting to screw it up, I asked Meathead from Amazing Ribs for some advice.  He suggested cutting it up into two-bone chops and marinating in his Sheep Dip before grilling.  The idea is that with the smaller chops you'll get a bit of the dark crust with each bite.  So that's what we did.  And I'm really glad we did.

Ingredients:  Rack of Lamb & Sheep Dip.

Sheep Dip.

You can find the Sheep Dip recipe here, along with some other good advice about grilling lamb.  We added a tablespoon of fresh chopped mint leaves.

Two steps are not pictured:
  1. Cutting the rack into two-bone chops.  Don't be intimidated -- this is very simple.  Much simpler than cutting a pork rack of spare ribs into a St. Louis-style rack, for example.
  2. Marinating the lamp chops.  I put them in a one gallon plastic bag with the Sheep Dip while I started the charcoal in the chimney starter.  Meathead advices to only marinate for about 20 minutes, which is convenient because after 20 minutes the charcoal is about ready.


They were grilled over a hot fire for 12-15 minutes and flipped often as there are really four sides to the chops when cut this way.  I pulled them when the bigger chops were at 125 degrees, so the smaller chops were closer to medium than medium-well after resting for a few minutes.  Perfect -- big medium chops for the adults, smaller medium-well chops for the kids.

Board Dressing.

Adam Lang Perry's Charred & Scruffed introduced me to the board dressing concept, and this is the first time we've tried it.  The idea is pretty simple and it makes sense -- after you grill the meat and while you're letting it rest, why not flip it around in some oil & herbs to enhance the flavor?  Here we used some of the same ingredients used in the Sheep Dip -- olive oil, garlic, rosemary, and mint.  I'll be doing this more often.

The obligatory motorcycle or Corvette pic that has nothing to do with nothing.
KTM Super Duke R at the Shaker Tavern in Auburn, KY.
Guess when it was built?

Plate One.


My favorite grilled meal of the year.  I don't have words to describe how good this is, so you'll just have to try it yourself.  If you're in this part of the country, I highly suggest getting your lamb from Debbie at our Farmers Market.  While you're there, you can also stock up on beef from Steve of Dolan Farms and pork from Bill & Linda of Stoney Creek Farm.  You'll be glad you did. I always am.

Plate Two.

There are few things I like more than lamb with mint jelly.  This pic is for our friend Steve from Borderland Farms who always likes to see a little green on the plate.  Or a lot.  Interestingly, he produces THE best strawberries we've ever had, and they're not green.




  1. Hey Rob,
    even with a freezer full of meat like this I want to move in too!!
    One of the things I love most about being a farmer is a partnership like this. We raise it and you make art out of it.
    Thanks so much for sharing your appreciation of our meats.

  2. This looks amazing. Love the obligatory photo.