Rosemary and Parmesan Crusted Lamb Chops

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I write a foodie column for a local magazine in my area several times per year. Like any print publication, the story has to be in early as the magazine then usually comes out several weeks later.

I was asked to share a recipe for the January edition, which comes out sometime the first week of the month. I wanted to focus on something different – and a bit decadent, because it would give readers some time to prepare for a romantic, elegant Valentine’s Day.

One of my favorite meals that I only make on very rare occasions are lamb chops. But when I do prepare them, I go all out! I “French the Lamb Rack”, which is a culinary technique that gives the meat a much more delicious flavor and a cleaner, more appealing presentation. I learned how to do this on the blog SeriousEats – the article is here.

Once that is done the recipe is super easy. It did take me about 30 minutes the first time I did it, but once you know what you’re doing, it is relatively easy. I highly recommend it.


Prepping the Meal

Once the lamb chops are prepared, you’ll want to marinate them for 30-60 minutes. I create a marinade with olive oil, fresh chopped rosemary, salt, pepper,  and white pepper.  Mix it all in a bowl and baste the chops. Refrigerate them for a bit. Then you can start on the breadcrumb mixture.


To prepare the breadcrumbs, I use about a 3-inch piece of crusty French bread that I bake first, for maximum crunchiness! While the bread is in the oven, take a chuck of either a good quality Parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheese. Pulse in the food processor to it crumbles. The same goes for the bread too. Do not let either get too powdery – you want a thick texture to both the bread and cheese.

Once they are pulsed, place in a bowl with lots of chopped rosemary, add some garlic if you desire, lots of fresh ground pepper, and Kosher salt. Add the olive oil so that it generously coats the mixture, without getting it too soggy. Set this aside for a while now.


Sear the Chops

Remove the marinating chops from the refrigerator and allow to sit for a few moments while you heat a large skillet. Get it hot. Sear the chops on each side for about 2 minutes. You’ll want to get a brown crust on the meat.

Once that’s done, let the chops on a foil-lined baking sheet for at least 30 minutes. During this time, start your other side dishes.


The final step is to pack the top side of the chop with the breadcrumb mixture. Add a lot! It’s delicious. You’ll want to have as much of the crunchy, salty cheese as you can in every bite.

Please the chops back in the oven at 375 for about 20 minutes. Depending on how thick the chops are, and how you like them prepared will ultimately depend on how long you cook them. If you bake them too long they will be dry and you do NOT want that.


Serving Suggestions

Once the chops are done, remove them from the over and place a foil tent over them for 10 minutes to allow them time to rest..

Place a dollop of mint jelly on the plate. I served mine with homemade scalloped potatoes (recipe coming soon), roasted asparagus with pecorino romano cheese (recipe coming soon), an a lite endive and arugula salad with a fig balsamic dressing with olive oil, pine nuts and lemon zest.

My go-to red wine that is delicious and reasonably priced is Ghost Pines Cabernet ($20). It pairs perfectly with this meal.

This dish is definitely a special occasion meal.

And for those of you that might not care for lamb, it can be made with pork chops as well. Enjoy!

Rosemary and Parmesan Crusted Lamb Chops

An elegant meal for special occasions
Prep Time 45 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Marinate 30 minutes. Rest after sear for 30 minutes. Rest after final baking for 10 minutes. 40 mins
Total Time 1 hr 55 mins
Course Lamb
Cuisine Dinner
Servings 2

Ingredients
  

  • 1 rack Lamb chops (6-8 bones)
  • 1 c Olive oil (divided)
  • 1 clove Fresh garlic
  • 1 small loaf French bread (for breadcrumbs)
  • 1/2 c Parmesan or Pecorino Romano (high quality, crumbled)
  • 6-7 sprigs Fresh rosemary (chopped)

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 375
  • I recommend to "French the Lamb Chops" which cleans them and makes for a much more elegant appearance and cleaner taste. (Link above for directions).
  • Cut into individual chops
  • Baste with 1/4 c olive oil, salt and pepper, and 2 springs of chopped rosemary. Marinate for at least 1 hour in the refrigerator.
  • Heat large skillet on stove until very hot
  • Sear chops for 2 minutes on each side. Remove and set on foil-lined baking sheet for 30 minutes.
  • Prepare breadcrumbs by toasting French bread until crispy and pulsing in food processor. Do not make them too powdery. It's better with some bulk.
  • Pulse a chuck of cheese. Mix both the cheese and breadcrumbs in a bowl.
  • Add 5 springs of chopped rosemary, pressed garlic, and olive oil. Do not soak in olive oil. You want it to be coated enough so it will be able to stick the chops without being too soggy. Add salt and pepper.
  • Lay chops on their side and top with breadcrumb mixture. Use plenty. It's delicious.
  • Bake for 20-30 minutes, uncovered. Remove from oven and tent with foil. Let rest for 10 minutes.
  • Arrange bones on plate. Add a garnish of microgreens, arugula, or parsley. Add a dollop of mint jelly to the plate. Serve with your favorite potato and vegetable.
Keyword Decadent, Elegant
Adam LapsevichRosemary and Parmesan Crusted Lamb Chops
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