Thursday, April 15, 2010

Rack Of Lamb With Mint-Shallot Vinaigrette

I've just returned from San Francisco--it's a foodie's heaven up there!

I had the most incredible meal at Picco, my Top Chef Brother's restaurant.  Maybe the best meal I've had there yet, and that's saying a lot!  They are doing truly exciting food up there (and details of the meal are forthcoming).  I'll be attempting to replicate some dishes on my own, though I know they're certain to pale in comparison to the originals.  Sigh...maybe I'll have to move one day.

Today, I'm writing up one of the best recipes I've made lately—Rack Of Lamb With Mint-Shallot Vinaigrette.  The lamb came from Healthy Family Farms, my farmers market CSA.  They have the mildest, most tender grassfed lamb!  I topped it with a quick mint-shallot vinaigrette.  I served the lamb over jumbo heirloom Runner Cannelini Beans (simmer in chicken stock for two and a half hours, saute onion, carrot, celery and garlic, then add beans and stock and reduce to sauce).

Not to toot my own horn, but I cooked this lamb perfectly!  So don't be afraid--this dish is actually surprisingly simple. Give it a shot!

Here's a special treat--this is what The Adorable Monster does while we eat dinner!  He curls up in the corner and sleeps  Aww... cuteness!

Grassfed Rack Of Lamb With Mint-Shallot Vinaigrette
Serves 2 people
Cooking time:  30 minutes

1 rack of lamb (preferably grassfed)
2 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
1 tablespoon fresh thyme
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons grapeseed or canola oil
salt and pepper

mint-shallot vinaigrette
5 sprigs of mint, stems removed and discarded
1 small shallot, peeled
1 garlic clove, peeled
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

Rinse the lamb and pat dry. Then sprinkle generously with salt and pepper on all sides and rub with the garlic, thyme and olive oil. Allow to come up to room temperature.

Meanwhile to make the vinaigrette, put all the ingredients in a small food processor or blender and puree until forms a bright green sauce. Adjust seasoning (salt) if needed. Set aside.

In a heavy-bottomed saute pan, heat the grapeseed or canola oil over medium-high heat until almost smoking. Add the lamb and quickly sear on all sides. Place in the oven for about 20-25 minutes (mine cooked for 22 minutes) until it reaches 130 degrees on an instant read thermometer for medium rare. Remove from heat and allow to rest for 10 minutes.

To plate, slice the lamb into pieces. Place around 3 pieces on a plate and drizzle with the vinaigrette. Enjoy!

Source For Ingredients
grassfed lamb from Healthy Family Farms, CSA (Hollywood Farmers Market)

organic mint, organic shallot, organic garlic, organic thyme and organic apple cider vinegar from Hollywood Farmers Market

organic sugar from Trader Joe's

Wine Pairing
With this meal, we drank a delicious bottle of Auteur 2007 Willlamette Valley, Pinot Noir!  This small producer makes fabulous wines, and I've yet to encounter a bottle I haven't loved.  The cherry flavors paired well with the minty, grassy lamb without overpowering it.


  1. Hmm..we must be on the same wavelength. I just made lamb tenderloin with salsa verde about an hour ago. But, after seeing this post, I am going to serve the leftovers with the mint shallot vinaigrette. It looks fabulous.

  2. Ooooh, that's sounds delicious! I think you'll love this recipe. Now I want to make it again!

  3. Funny how the day after you leave a house filled with new lambs you make lamb...

  4. Jenny, this is lamb. Not a lamb! Also, I made this before the birth of the blessed beasts. Any new baby lambs? xo

  5. This looks great, but please stop cooking HFF's fantastic meats in genetically modified oils! Canola should be in no one's kitchen!