It comes as no surprise to anyone who knows me, that my passion is food, the big astonishment however, if God came down right now and said, ‘ok Jax, choose a passion for the rest of your life’, I would drop food like a hot rock and pick music. Vinyl, CD’s and of course back…
Rack of Lamb w Almond & Mint Crust
Some recipes, I make enough of so I don’t have to share, this is that dish!
Prep Time: 20 min
Cook time: 40 min
2 lamb racks (french dressed)
salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp olive oil
1 cup fresh mint leaves
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tsp smoked paprika
zest of 1 lemon
1/3 cup slivered almonds
3/4 cup fresh breadcrumbs
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp dijon mustard
Kumara and Rosemary Rosti
2 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for frying
1 onion, finely sliced
1 clove garlic, crushed
2 large kumara, peeled
1/4 cup fresh rosemary leaves (6 – 8 ) finely sliced
salt and freshly ground
Trim off any excess fat from the racks and using a sharp knife, cut each in half so you have 4 sections with 4 chops on each. Season well with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Drizzle the first measure of olive oil into a large frying pan, when hot seal your racks on all sides (you may have to use some tongs to hold it in place). Remove from the pan and set aside to cool.
CRUST : pop your mint, garlic, paprika and zest into a food processor and pulse until coarse. Add the almonds and breadcrumbs and pulse again until the mixture is well blended and the consistency of large breadcrumbs. Mix in the second measure of olive oil and allow to absorb for a couple of minutes.
Preheat the oven to 180.
Take your cooled racks and paint the meaty side of each with the mustard. Divide the crumb mixture into four and using the back of a spoon, press a portion of the mixture onto each side of your racks.
Place on a baking tray : If you love your lamb ‘medium‘ cook for 20 – 25 minutes. ‘Well done‘, extend your cooking time by a further 5 minutes. Once cooked, rest for 5 minutes before carving.
ROSTI : Pop the butter, first measure of oil, onion and garlic in a frying pan and sauté gently for 7 – 10 minutes, until the onion is golden brown. Set aside to cool.
Grate the kumara directly into a clean tea towel, gather up the edges and squeeze out any excess moisture. Scrape into a large bowl with the egg, rosemary and onion mixture. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper and mix well.
Preheat the oven (or use the lowest shelf when the lamb is cooking) to 110. In the same frying pan over a medium heat, add the second measure of oil. Using a cookie cutter as a mould, place into the pan and press a couple of spoonfuls of rosti mixture into the cutter.
Press down firmly then remove the cutter gently to leave a nice round-shape in the pan. Fry on one side until golden brown, flip and repeat on the other side. Transfer to the oven to keep warm and crispy, while you fry the remaining rosti’s.
SERVE: the lamb on top of the rosti with some seasonal veg and a large dollop of mint jelly or lashings of gravy
Jax Says : You can prep the lamb to the ‘sealing’ point the day before for ease of kitchen time. As well as make the crust earlier too. Both will keep in the fridge for 1 day prior to completing the dish.
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Is Jax your real name?: No my full name is Jacqueline, Sylvia Margaret Hamilton (I know right) just call me Jax Where are you from?: Stratford, East London (under the sound of the bow bells), which makes me a 100% cockney. However my parents are from Jamaica and I’m now a Kiwi Citizen – phew!…