Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Lamb Chops with Mint, Tomato and Garlic Sauce and Yogurt Cucumber Salad


These lamb chops are so tasty.  I have made them a few different times and each time I am thrilled with the way they turn out.  The tomato-garlic sauce that goes on top of each lamb chop you literally will want to eat with a spoon when you first taste it...so be careful not to to do too many taste tests!  Be sure to buy good bone in lamb chops, it makes such a huge difference.  The cucumber salad is the perfect side and we usually make an easy couscous as well.  Enjoy!

Lamb Chops with Mint, Tomato and Garlic Sauce

  • 8 thick-cut bone in lamb loin chops, each 1 1/2 inches thick, 2-2 1/2 lb. total
  • Extra-virgin olive oil for coating, plus 2 Tbs.
  • Kosher salt and ground pepper
  • 2 Tbs. chopped flat parsley
  • 2 Tbs. chopped fresh basil
  • 1 small shallot, minced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
  • 2 tspn. balsamic vinegar
  • 8 fresh basil leaves, cut into narrow strips
  • 8 fresh mint leaves, cut into narrow strips
  • 1/4 dry red wine
-Trim off the excess surface fat from the lamb chops.  
-Brush the chops on both sides with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper.  Press the chopped parsley and basil firmly into both sides of each chop.  Let stand at room temperature for 20-30 minutes.
-Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, warm 1 Tbs. of the olive oil.  Add the shallot and saute until softened, 3-4 minutes.  Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute.  Increase the heat to medium-high, add the tomatoes and cook, stirring frequently, until they start to release their liquid, 3-4 minutes.  Add the vinegar and season with salt and pepper.  Cook until most of the liquid has evaporated, 3-4 minutes.  Remove from the heat and stir in the basil and mint strips.  Set the sauce aside.
-Preheat a large, cast iron skillet over high heat until very hot.  Add the remaining 1 Tbs. of olive oil, then add the lamb chops and sear for 2 minutes.  Turn the chops over and sear for 1 minute.  Transfer the pan to the oven and roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the meat, away from the bone, registers at 125 degrees for very medium rare, 5-6 minutes.  Transfer the chops to a warmed platter and cover loosely with aluminum foil.  Pour any excess fat from the pan.  Set the pan over medium-high heat, add the wine and cook, stirring to scrape up the browned bits.  Add the tomato sauce and any juices from the platter and bring to a boil.  Remove from the heat.  Divide the chops on plates and spoon the sauce over the chops.  Serve immediately.

Cucumber-Yogurt Salad
  • 2 cups of plain greek yogurt
  • 1 cucumber, peeled, seeded and diced
  • 1 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 tspn. ground cumin
  • 1 tspn. minced garlic
  • 2 tspns. fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 chopped fresh mint
  • salt and pepper
-Combine all the above ingredients in a serving bowl and mix well.  Refrigerate for 30 minutes and serve.



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