Oooo, boy. Am I excited to talk to you about this herb crusted rack of lamb. I am a greedy person so I am always excited about food, but rarely this excited. This level of excitement is special.
So, Donald Russell got in touch and asked me to create a recipe with a product they’d send over to me. They’d previously sent me a link to their guide to making a perfect casserole, so I assumed I’d get some kind of beef. But no. They sent me two French-trimmed racks of lamb.
I about lost my mind at this point. Lamb is my favourite meat. It’s possibly because I’m Welsh and therefore I have to love it, it’s possibly because I don’t get to eat it very often, it’s possibly because it’s so damn tasty, whatever. I don’t need to know the rationale behind it to know that I love lamb from the depths of my greedy, greedy soul. When I received this beautiful rack of lamb, I knew I had to do something special with it.
Lamb reminds me of spring, and we’re just getting to that point in the year when the weather turns warm and the nights get long. I had spring in my veins at this point, so I decided to try and do a spring themed meal.
I love the taste of lemony spring greens, so that was the first thing I wanted to serve. I’d recently had some incredible dauphinoise potatoes at a friend’s wedding, so I wanted to get a low-fat version of them a try. So to compliment the lemony greens and the creamy potatoes, I decided to cook the lamb with a punch by adding a lemon and herb crust.
The whole thing was spectacular and worked really well together. I’ll have separate recipes for the greens and the potatoes, but today we’re going to talk about the lamb.
Donald Russell are apparently a Royal Warrant holding butcher. Having tried their lamb, I can see why. The rack was beautifully prepared, and I think the vacuum packing really helped make it taste as fresh as possible and stay tender and delicious. Garry has a real issue with meat after eating lots of cheap/bad meat when he was a child, so usually unless it’s minced up or it’s chicken he’s not a big fan. But this? This had him picking the bones clean.
The meat was beautifully soft and and juicy, even after cooking and even though I removed the fat from the meat after browning. Honestly, I took a lot of photos but had to delete most of them for being too pornographic. This is the only one that’s safe for work.
But, y’know, I think the way I cooked it really helped. I whizzed up wholemeal breadcrumbs (a better texture than white, I think) with salt and pepper, lemon zest, rosemary, sage and thyme. I think spread a thin layer of Dijon mustard over the lamb, and coated it in the crumbs.
I roasted it for 25 minutes to get it medium rare, rested it under foil whilst I prepared everything else, then devoured it.
You need to make this. It’s St. David’s Day on Sunday, and I might just use the other rack of lamb to celebrate. Feel free to head over to Donald Russell to get your meat from them – I honestly couldn’t be more impressed.
I’ll put the greens and dauphinoise potatoes recipes up in the next few weeks.
- One rack of lamb
- 1 slice of wholemeal bread, torn into pieces
- 2 tablespoons of rosemary leaves
- 2 tablespoons of thyme leaves
- 2 tablespoons of sage leaves
- The zest of one lemon
- Half a tablespoon of mustard
- Pre-heat the oven to 200C
- Add the bread, lemon zest and the herb leaves to a food processor with lots of salt and pepper. Blitz into fine crumbs
- Brown the lamb on all sides in a frying pan. Remove, and brush on all sides with the mustard. Coat with the crumb crust
- Place on a baking tray and bake for 20 minutes for rare, 25 for medium-rare and 30 for well done. 25 is the optimum - it'll be cooked through but still pink and juicy in the middle
- Cover loosely with foil for five minutes whilst you prepare the rest of the meal
- You can trim the fat from the meat or keep it on. I trimmed it after I'd browned the meat, as it was slightly easier.