Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Herb & Parmesan Crusted Lamb with Mint Pesto

Since February is National Lamb Lovers Month I couldn't resist sharing a lamb recipe that I recently prepared for our Valentines Day dinner.  And, while I made this up special for my family, don't think that you have to be a french chef or have a formal occasion to eat lamb.  It's just as easy to prepare and fix in the kitchen as pork or beef, and will definitely add some flavor and variety to your dinner menu.

This particular recipe is one I combined from two cookbooks; the Pollan Family Table Cookbook and my Taste of Home Cookbook.  And the great thing about this recipe is that it is versatile enough to use on any number of cuts of lamb.  While I used it on a rack of lamb you could easily fix this on chops, steaks or a roast.  And I love that the Mint Pesto recipe calls for some red wine.  You can easily pour a glass of the same wine to enjoy with your dinner.  I used a Shiraz, but any dry red wine will work great.

Ingredients for the Lamb:
3 garlic cloves
2 T. parsley
1 T. thyme
2 tsp. rosemary
8 rib rack of lamb
1/4 cup grated Parmesan Cheese
Instructions for Lamb:
1. In a food processor, combine garlic, parsley thyme and rosemary and pulse for 1 minute.
2. Add EVOO and a dash of salt and pepper.
3. Process until the garlic is finely chopped.
4. Spread the puree all over the lamb with a spatula.
5. Place the lamb on a rimmed baking sheet.
6. Roast lamb at 450 degrees for 15 to 30 minutes (depending on your preferred level of doneness.)
7. Read thermometer, inserted in center. Medium (140 - 140 degrees F.)  Well Done (160 degrees F.)
8. For the last 10 minutes of cooking sprinkle Parmesan cheese on top and let melt and brown.
9. Remove lamb from oven, tent with aluminum foil and let rest for 10 minutes before serving.
While the lamb is baking you can clean out your food processor and prepare your Mint Pesto.

Ingredients for the Mint Pesto:
1 1/2 cups fresh mint leaves
1 garlic clove
1/2 cup EVOO
1 tsp. dijon mustard
2 T. red wine
2 T. lemon juice
2 T. sugar

Instructions for Mint Pesto:
1. In a food processor add the mint, parsley, garlic, EVOO, mustard, vinegar, lemon juice, sugar and a dash of salt and pepper.
2. Process until smooth.
3. Transfer to a serving bowl.

Now slice up your lamb and serve alongside a vegetable or salad, pour yourself another glass of wine and enjoy the great taste of Lamb tonight.

This post was sponsored by Indiana Family of Farmers but the recipe, opinions and photographs are my own.

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