I was looking in my refrigerator to figure out what type of marinade I wanted on the lamb rack. I found the following ingredients in the fridge (mint, cilantro, and ginger) and thought, I bet that would make a good marinade. So, I made up a marinade for the lamb, and I was really pleased how it turned out. So was Bruce.
- 1 rack of lamb
- 2 tablespoons of oil
- 1/2 cup of fresh mint leaves
- 1 bunch of fresh cilantro (If you don’t like cilantro, use parsley or more mint.)
- 3 inches knob of fresh ginger
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 2 tablespoons of honey
- 1 lemon or 2 tablespoons of lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon of table salt or sea salt
- Fresh ground pepper to taste
- 2 cups water
- 1 tablespoon of chopped mint leaves for a garnish (Optional)
Food processor or blender or immersion blender and jar, at least a 12″ frying pan, knife, cutting board, non-reactive bowl (glass bowl or stainless steel), tongs
- If using food processor, set up bowl with cutting blade.
- Peel the ginger with a spoon, then very thinly slice it (1/8″ thick).
- Peel the garlic and cut the cloves in half.
- Wash the mint leaves, shake them over the sink to remove water.
- Wash about a tablespoon of the cilantro, and shake over the sink to remove water.
- Roll the lemon on your counter to help break it up so it will juice easier, then wash it. Zest the lemon, cut the lemon in half and squeeze the lemon.
- Put ginger, garlic, mint, cilantro with stems, honey, lemon zest, lemon juice, salt, and pepper in the food processor or blender or jar for the immersion blender and process until you have a fairly smooth marinade, it can be a slightly chunky marinade. (If you don’t have anything other than a knife, you can finely mince the garlic, ginger, mint leaves, cilantro leaves and stems, and whisk them together with the salt, pepper, lemon juice and honey.)
- Every two ribs, cut the lamb rack between the bones. You will have 4 parts of lamb, with 2 ribs per part. Cut off any large amounts of extra fat on the meat part of the ribs.
- Put the lamb in a non-reactive bowl and pour the marinade over it. Rub the marinade into the ribs. Let sit for at least 15 minutes and up to 30 minutes.
- Heat frying pan with the 2 tablespoons of oil (I use a cast iron skillet) over high heat.
- Once oil starts to shimmer, remove lamb ribs from the marinade, and carefully place the lamb in the pan.
- Cook on each side for a minute each. This includes the rib side, the side opposite the ribs, and the bottom of the rib meat, as well as the cut sides of the meat. (5 minutes). Using tongs makes this a lot easier and you are pricking the meat with a fork that lets out juices. The honey will caramelize and may burn a little.
- Turn the heat to low. Pour the marinade left in the bowl into the pan once you have cooked the lamb on each side. Cook for another 12 to 15 minutes or until the lamb is as done as you like it, and add a cup of water, when pan starts getting dry. Add additional water if pan starts getting dry. (Medium rare is 145 F, medium is 160 F, and well done is 170.)
- Remove the lamb from the pan to a plate and loosely tent with aluminum foil for 5 minutes to allow the lamb to rest and still keep warm. Stir pan sauce, scrapping up any burned bit and fond. Leave pan sauce in pan over low heat, and add more water if necessary. Pour any juices from plate the lamb was resting on back into the pan.
- To serve: Family style – Put lamb on a platter, spoon the pan sauce over the lamb, and then sprinkle with the tablespoon of chopped mint.